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cruz paul sadler debates paul for the open texas senate seat vacated by kay bailey hutchison. this debate comes to us from dallas, courtesy of wfaa tv. ted cruz is the former salaam -- solicitor general and paul sadler is a former member of the texas house. live coverage on c-span. >> to protect you in washington -- >> billions -- millions of americans are standing up, saying, we want our country back. >> ted cruz -- >> i would like to turn around the out of control spending. >> self-anointed a true texas conservative. >> or paul sadler, the underdog east texas attorney. >> do not you anoint him yet.
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>> a democrat rich in experience to forge bipartisan reform, but short on cash and name recognition. >> i will be right here in texas where i belong. >> the man behind the message. >> can we take the u.s. senate? >> is cruz vs sadler -- the belo debate. >> good evening everyone. thank you for joining us for the belo debate, ted cruz vs paul sadler. we are living from wfaa's studios in dallas. we want to welcome the words across the state. the two u.s. senate candidates, republican ted cruz and democrat paul sadler, are debating for the first time before the november election. it is a race to decide who will represent texans in the u.s. senate. i hope that by the end of the night to have a better idea of
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who you want to vote for. we will follow your comments and commentary on twitter. just use the hashtag #belodebate. we will be able to follow along. look for additional information on twitter. we will have supplemental information on each candidate on what -- where they stand on issues. this is a very different debate. we are throwing out the rules. candidates will face each other answering tough questions. moderating tonight is wfaa's senior political supporter -- reporter, brad watson. joining him is political reporter gromer jeffers. let's turn to dan. >> thank you very much. good evening. >> good to be with you. >> thank you for being with us tonight. >> should be fun. >> we are at it again. >> i would like to start tonight by framing with this race is right now for november with
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questions for each of you. we start with mr. sadler. you have an uphill battle. raising money has been hard. the democratic party has been behind you for the primary against a totally unknown candidate. democrats in texas are not totally behind you. why should independent or moderate republican voters consider you? >> do not confuse the texas democratic party with the national democratic party. the texas democratic party is very strongly behind me. it has been pretty amazing. the national party made its decision a year ago, a long time ago. i would not read too much into that aspect of it. the texan democratic party is strongly behind me. republicans and independents should support me because of my bipartisan record. i have a record of accomplishment. i work on education bills and a
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tax cut. that was done with the republican governor, is split between republicans and democrats in the house and senate. it was a bipartisan effort. we got it done for texas. road. been on the i really do not know. >> mr. sadler, a democrat has not won a statewide office in texas since 1994. do you consider this an uphill battle? >> for an open senate seat, it is always a battle, and should be, and needs to be, regardless of the party. i understand we have not elected a democrat in a long time. >> let's go to mr. cruz. he said the day after you beat lt. governor dewhurst, he said he would run scared for the general election. but you have agreed to this and what other debt -- televised debate. you criticized governor
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dewhurst for having almost 40 candidate forms up to the primary, but are you planning its eighth and coasting? safe and coasting? >> we have been crisscrossing the state of texas. we have been all over the state, literally hundreds of dop's and vfw halls and enny's talking with voters in every part of the state. that is what we are doing between now and election day. i'm very glad to be here in this debate tonight. i am looking forward to another debate in a couple of weeks. i think it is important to present the very clear force the state -- election faces. >> 1.4 million republicans in the primary -- to put a lot of energy into that. why shouldn't they have the same energy and exposure side-by-side with you and mr. sadler as before the primary?
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>> we are debating here today. we will debate in a couple of weeks. in the meantime, i am on the road in a different city between just about every day between now and election day. >> but why can not we have another debate? why not the one in houston? what are you afraid of? >> i am focusing on supporting our campaign. that is what we're doing. i'm listening to the voters of campaign -- tx. >> you can build the support in a debate. >> we agree to this one. look -- i understand you are working very hard to get media coverage. it is not our obligation to help you in that. you can go convey your message to texas voters. i am conveying mine. >> is your obligation to face the voters of texas. >> i am doing that. >> as you said, state by tv, is
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the critical point. you have had the opportunity. even for the tea party debate, which she would not do. why what he faced me now? >> we are sitting here right now. you can launch every attack you want to right now, on television. an unscripted, moderated format -- this is an unscripted. >> you will not face me six times. >> maybe you could actually respond. you are facing right now. attack me however you like. and wes move forward will see if there are more debates later on. maybe you two can negotiate that. if you cut government benefits -- a secretly recorded video of mitt romney at a private fund- raiser was made public -- let's take a look. >> 47% of the people -- who will
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vote for the president a matter what. who believe the government has responsibility to care for them. who believe they are entitled to health care and food and housing, you name it. that is an entitlement. >> texas -- in 2010, 30.5% of texans filing era -- return paid no income tax. there is no data on how many texans get government assistance, but the census bureau found 24% get social security. 20 -- 14% did retirement income. 5% disability bed -- benefits and 14% from strands. mr. cruz, do you believe that government has a responsibility to care for them? >> of course not. i agree with mitt romney when he says his comments were poorly phrased.
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keefe said they were in elegantly stated. i think there is a difference. part of the philosophy of president obama is trying to get as many americans as possible dependent on government so that the democrats can stay in power in perpetuity. the reason i think that is failing is, even those americans, if you break down that 47%, there is a significant chunk of people, receiving social security, who have paid into it their entire life. that is very different from being dependent on welfare. that is a critical safety net our society has counted on that we need to insure remain strong for generations to come. even those who are receiving welfare right now, most americans do not want to stay dependent on government. they want to work for the american dream. they want to work to provide for themselves and their families. i think that is why the obama administration's objective is essentially using bread and
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circuses to make as many people as possible dependent on government, to keep voting democratic, is not succeeding. americans want to stand on their own feet. >> that is the craziest thing i ever heard of my life. you are accusing the president of united states of using a government program to manipulate people do not get a job, to be dependent on the government for services? impressed. we are a few minutes and -- >> let me finish. pressed we're a few minutes and and you have now three times call me crazy on observing that the president has expanded government dependency. >> you are saying he is manipulating american civil democratic. -- so they will vote democratic. >> let's talk about the issue of benefits. in 1960, 20% -- of federal
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spending went to individual spent -- payments. this year, 65% of federal spending goes to individual payments. i would suggest we do have a problem with government -- >> we had a downturn in the economy. we of hard times, people looking for work and not able to find jobs. >> 65% of federal spending going to individual payments. it may not sound good, but we have created a welfare state. >> to blame it all on president obama is even worse. to declare the president of the united states is manipulating so people will stay and vote democrat? i think that is the most ridiculous thing i have ever heard. if such a cynical view of the presidency and of government. that cannot possibly reflect -- >> your response? >> i think a far better approach than a dependency is
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removing the barrier the federal government puts in place to small businesses and allowing entrepreneurs and small businesses to drive. >> what barriers? >> i am very happy to discuss the various. >> i wish she would. >> let him finish and make his point, then you can respond. >> what texans are looking for, and what is inherent in the east coast of texas, is that we are not looking for handouts. we're looking for the chance to the entrepreneur is, to work to achieve. think there have been a host of regulatory policies under barack obama that has killed jobs, ranging from obamacare to dodd-frank, to the abuse and enforcement of environmental laws, the ban on the xl pipeline, the enforcement of labor laws -- those policies have killed thousands and thousands of jobs and collectively, we are making it incredibly difficult for small
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businesses to drive, much less -- thrive, much less survive. >> so if you have 65% of spending going to individual payments, what would you do to try to reduce that? >> in order to create more jobs, we have to control the national debt. i think that is what we have to do. i have said it from the beginning. i have given a plan to try to deal with it. this idea that somehow mr. cruz is lecturing us on standing on our own feet, i find incredible. he spent most of your adult life working for the government. you have not created jobs. you have not on your own business. i have. my wife and i own a retail store. we did not have the federal government with their boots on our neck. when george bush was president, we lost 700,000 jobs per month. all these programs were in place at the time. the only addition is the health
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care act, which has not been fully implemented. i think that you have a selective memory of where we are in this country and how we got to where we currently are. >> i must say, mr. sadler may well be the only person, the only small business owner, former small-business owner in the state who does not think the regulatory and tax burden under this administration has make -- made life harder to create jobs. i will tell you, crisscrossing the state, it does not matter, east texas, west texas, austin, dallas, houston, small-business owners say their life has become much harder with the regulatory uncertainty and burdens. two-thirds of all new jobs come from small-business. >> i am not hearing that from small business. you keep saying that, but i do not hear it. >> in response to the romney video, a obama video service in
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which he discusses market forces and competition, but also the redistribution of wealth. let's take a look. >> the it is figuring out how we structure government systems that pool resources and facilitate some redistribution, because i actually believe in redistribution, at least a certain level to make sure everybody has got a shot. >> mr. sadler, do you agree with this notion of redistributing wealth from one side of americans to another site? >> i do not agree with that at all. i do not know the context, the full context of what he is saying, but that was 15 years ago. >> 14. >> 14 years ago. i do not follow that philosophy. i do not see any evidence, in spite of mr. cruz's claims, of him manipulating the public, as he suggests. >> mr. cruz, please respond -- do you believe he is saying he
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does not believe in redistribution? >> of course president obama believes in wealth distribution. one of the things mr. sadler has been clear is that he supports president obama. this president has engaged in reckless fiscal policies. we have seen as a national debt under president obama grow from $10 trillion to over 16 doris trillium. it is larger than our gross domestic product. we galloping down the road to where greece and italy and much of europe find themselves. i cannot tell you how many texans have expressed to me one on one their concerns that we're jeopardize in the future up for our kids and grandkids if we do not get out of control federal spending under control. >> the numbers are wrong to begin with. we act redoubled our national debt under george w. bush. when you were working for him, i believe. the war in a iraq and afghanistan and bush tax cuts -- we doubled our spending under george bush.
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we continue to add during the obama years, but had to deal with the iraq and afghanistan wars and the bush tax caps -- cuts that were never paid for. the support president obama as are commanded -- commander in chief? do you believe he is the united states citizen? you accept the fact the columns of the christian? >>-- he called himself a christian? >> that was three questions. i will say, of course barack obama is our commander in chief. i wish he were a stronger commander in chief. >> to you believe in the? >> let him finish, please. you posed the question. >> i wish he were a stronger commander in chief. in recent weeks, we saw the tragedy of the assassination of -- >> let him finish.
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>> ok. >> they are simple questions. >> i.n.d. stand you would like to put meat on the cross examination stage. if you would like a -- >> i'll give you about 20 seconds, then we will move on. >> i wish she were a stronger commander in chief. the last few weeks, we saw our ambassador to libya assassinated in an organized action by al qaeda on september 11. his response was to affectively apologize and blame it on an obscure internet video instead of standing up to terrorists. >> are you going to answer my question, or just lecture? >> i do not agree with what you said and how you described it at all. >> he asked me a question back. >> we will move on to that in a moment. right now, i want to get back to the original question -- a
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fiscal matter regarding taxes and the reason -- redistribution of wealth. >> mr. sadler, you have indicated support in letting the bush tax cuts at all income levels expire, a position which is beyond what the president supports. >> that is not what i said. what i said was, we will have to look at all of this tax cut. in light of our national debt, we have to balance our budget, cut spending where we can, we will hope our economy continues to do well, but we will have to look at various sources to retire in national debt of $16 trillion. at the appropriate time, we have to look at every one of the bush tax cuts and figure out how they affect the economy, how to generate revenue we can dedicate to pin down national debt. that is what it will require there are obviously things we
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will not do. i do not think he will do the top -- child care deduction or change the estate tax law, but i think there are levels of income and rates we have to look at. >> the question was, do you support letting all the bush tax cuts expire? i want to play video of may 3 of the houston pbs forum when you are asked, do you want to do away with bush tax-cut? >> the very thing we will have to do -- we will have to let the bush tax cuts go. in order to pay down the national debt. at the end of the day, if you look at the budget, a look at the budget you get down to military and defense spending or the bush tax cuts. >> are you talking about the bush tax cuts on all income levels? >> there is no qualification in that statement. what i said, and i still stand by, there are three things that
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doubled on national debt -- the bush tax cuts, -- >> the question is, do you want to expire them in total? there was no qualification. >> i am getting there. i think, and i still say, that we have to look at every single one of them and determine if we can use some of that money to pay down our national debt. we can lie to the american people or tell the truth. the truth is that those tax cuts, if we let them expire, will increase our national debt by almost one-half. >> what is your position, mr. cruz? >> i would not allow the bush tax cuts to expire. i'm curious. i will commend mr. sadler. he is running a campaign with a great deal of courage because he is running and i'm -- unapologetically liberal campaign and is running in support of raising taxes, a host of liberal views. i commend him for his candor in
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that. i do not think those are the values of most texans. i am curious, mr. sadler, which texans would you raise taxes on, and which texans would do not raise taxes on? >> do you consider it liberal to say we have to balance the budget and pay down national debt. do you think is liberal to cut spending? i think is liberal to cut taxes when you are operating a deficit, because you are spending money. >> i do not think your labels mean a lot. what i have said from the beginning -- the centerpiece of our problems is the national debt. we simply have to look at this. whether we do it this year because of the way our economy is or next year, a two-door 0.3 trillion -- 2.3 doris trillion -- >> i want you to respond to this. >> i'm glad there is a clear
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contrast between the two of us. i do not believe we should raise taxes. i do not think the problem is that americans are not taxed enough. mr. sadler has been very candid that he would consider raising taxes on every single tax and who pays income tax is. >> that is not fair. >> if you would consider allowing all of the bush tax cuts to expire, that would raise taxes on every single tax and who pays income tax. are the texans to pay income taxes we would not raise taxes on? you did not have an answer. >> you will not put words in my mouth. i would say, the first place, we have to balance the budget, cut spending, and raise revenue to reduce the national debt. you have never given any plan to reduce the national debt. anything you even described. talk about the deficit, our current budget, but you never say how you will eliminate $16 billion of the national debt. even tom coburn, one of your heroes, from oklahoma, says we have to raise revenue.
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we have to cut spending. we have to balance our budget. that is not liberal, that is not conservative, it is just the truth. >> i will make a point that in that entire answer, mr. sadler did not disagree with me once that there is not a single texan who currently pays income tax that he is willing to rule out raising taxes on. i've asked to three times that question, and you have yet to give an answer. >> hold on, what about the question of revenue? he mentioned coburn -- there was a proposal of three to one tax cuts to revenues. >> i think the problem we have right now is that federal spending is out of control. the problem is not the taxes are too low. historically, tax revenues have been roughly 18% of gdp. government expenditures have been roughly 20% of gdp. with barack obama as president,
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those have risen to nearly 25% of gdp. that is a structural shift in the size of a government. i think the solution is to bring it back. i think that is especially true when the economy is teetering on the brink of recession. any economist worth his salt would tell you that the worst thing to do when the economy is coming out of recession and potentially going into another recession is to jack up taxes on job creators, small businesses, and yet that is precisely what my opponent is proposing? >> that is absolutely not true. we have to look at them at some point of time. you do not do this in a vacuum and not just do it in the last days of a political campaign. it is interesting to me -- if you acknowledge all of governments and just look at the $2.30 trillion -- it would still take eight years to pay down our national debt. yet you not commit to a single program to pay down national debt.
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you keep saying the same stuff that we have to cut spending. if you cut everything, abolish every government department, it would take us eight years to pay down. >> we will move on to foreign policy issues. >> with respect, the premise of your statement is not accurate. i have campaigned for two years on very specific strategies to reduce the spending in government. we have to get the spending under control. your statement is not accurate. >> let me go back to the policy questions, foreign policy question about the situation recently with the north africa. american taxpayers billions of dollars -- it was a big issue when we saw the scenes will see in a moment in egypt and the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. a radical islamist group attacked the u.s. embassy and tore down the american flag. in the same day, in libya, an assault on the consulate resulted in the death of the
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american ambassador christopher stevens and three others. these images echo the worst -- the recall those moments in 1979 with the taking of american hostages at the embassy in iran. u.s. taxpayers as an enormous 1.6 billion doris to egypt, -- $1.6 billion to egypt, which is now run by a former member of the muslim brotherhood. should the u.s. give up foreign aid to these nations, mr. sadler? >> no. not now, we have a fledgling government being formed a. with egypt withholding funds, the editorial board agreed is time for us to stop the old on that aid. it is in our best interests to stay involved. if we do not stay involved,
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russia, china, and other countries with in this world will i do not think to cut off the aid. >> mr. cruz? >> this is another area of clear disagreement. we should not be funding those who are contrary to our interest. the only justification for continuing that aid or any portion of it is it to protect national security interests of the united states. we should use that aid as extensive leverage to protect national security interest. we should not be writing a blank check. lookit the nation of egypt, the muslim brotherhood in power, i think that is an extraordinarily dangerous situation for us to be sending over $1 billion to them, much of it in military aid. it is a precarious situation. >> mr. sadler? do you agree with that? >> if he severed ties with egypt, you guarantee that people who are our enemies will be involved. i think it is a dangerous strategy mr. cruz is suggesting,
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and it violates every foreign policy we have had in recent memory. the fact is, the way we will help these countries go forward -- if we do not, our enemies will. i would much rather us be involved. >> there is one principle clear from time in more -- immemorial respectt's cannot weakness. the tragic costed to tuition in iran -- -- the tragic hostage situation in iran -- this president has engaged in the wrong pattern of calling those hostile to the united states -- coddling those hostile to the united states. recently, the president was too busy to meet with prime minister of israel benjamin netanyahu but could still appear on letterman. that that could take priority over meeting eight bible allied.
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>> do you still consider egypt and ally? >> i hope so. but i do not think we should write a blank check. i think we should be using the aid as a lever point to ensure they are an ally. >> that is exactly what our foreign policy is. that is what our representatives and president has -- have been doing. i do not know what world you are living in, but this foreign- policy has been in place for many presidents. we that support these countries and remain friendly with them, or you guarantee they go to the other side. i think it is extraordinarily reckless and dangerous -- not what you are suggesting, a position of weakness. >> let me ask you a question about a strong president. do you agree with president obama in his refusal to meet with prime minister netanyahu and his decision to go on "the view" instead. >> i think he should always meet
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with heads of government. i feel the government of the state of texas should meet with the president, regardless of their affiliation. that is a sign of respect. >> on that we have agreement. both of us think it was wrong for president obama to snubbed the prime minister of israel. >> i do not know what his schedule is. you characterized -- rhetoric about snubbing, been weak, i do not know what the situation was for the president's office, his schedule, what the israeli prime minister's schedule was. if it is possible, you should always meet with foreign heads of government you so what scheduling conference the think would be sufficient? he declined requests from the prime minister to meet when the prime minister was in new york. my understanding is that during that same week he went on david letterman and "the view." >> at the same time? you are using that as an excuse?
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>> we do not even know. you do not even know. the slander our president and not the -- even know his schedule. >> i am describing his conduct. >> i do not know david letterman's personal schedule or the president's, but we have come to the bottom of a half- hour. much more in the next 30 minutes. >> thank you. a spirited, sometimes fiery debate between our two than senate candidates. we appreciate them being here and appreciate hearing from you. you have been following on through the first half. use the hashtag #belodebate. what so far about the answers? what issues matter to you? have the answer your questions? let's talk about what you have to say, when we come back. more cruz versus sadler, right after this. >> the senate debate will continue in a couple of minutes.
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while we wait, a look at the c- span bus tours through virginia, where we heard from university students about our program and. >> it will be a factor in an election -- this election. a lot of them are voting for the first time and a lot of them will want to vote on the direction the country will go into i do not think the young people will be a factor in this year's election. i do not think celebrities are endorsing as much. i also think the racial factors of the last election were overplayed. >> young people will be a huge factor this year. students care about the decisions that happened today because they affect tomorrow. they are passionate about what is going on and really want to get involved in this election cycle. >> they will play an important role in the 2012 election. we are ultimately driven to change the world and the country. >> when nations cheat in trade and china has treated -- she
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did, i will do something in the president has not been able to do. label than a currency manipulator. >> we have brought more outrages -- cases against china in one term than the previous administration did in two. we have been winning this case is. >> wednesday, president obama and romney needed in their first debate. jim lehrer moderates from the university of denver. what and engage with our live debate preview at 7:00 p.m. eastern, followed by two ways to watch the debate at 9:00. on c-span, both candidates on- screen the entire debate. on c-span 2 bank, the multi camera version. following, your reactions, calls, e-mail, and tweets. following our coverage at c- span, c-span radio, and online at c-span.org. >> back to dallas. the texas senate debate, courtesy of wfaa. the senate seat is being vacated
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by kay bailey hutchison. [no audio] the texas senate debate getting underway shortly. ted cruz is a former solicitor general. paul sadler is a former member of the texas house. this is sent to us courtesy of wfaa tv. >> welcome back to, everyone, to ted cruz versus sadler. a lot of twittering going on, as the covered wide range of topics. let's get to some of them right here on the board. from david holmes -- i like this format. why won't you agree to more debates, cruz?
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up next, coming from joshua, sadler is already looking desperate, he may want to rethink his insistence on six debates. from houston news, remove the moderators and that these two go at it. >it may be too late for that. moderators' are firmly in place during their best as they hash out issues. let's go to health care and immigration. back to you. >> we are going to talk about health care right now, a huge topic in texas and around the nation. mr. cruz, we'll start with you. you have made your position on the affordable care act commonly known by -- as obamacare. >> the first bill i intend to introduce is a bill to repeal every syllable of every word of obamacare. i intend to lead the fight to get that done. there is enormous pressure to compromise -- we should repeal it in it's entirety. >> under the health care so far -- loss of four, 357,000 texans
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under 26 have coverage by joining their parents insurance plans. 2.2 million seniors receive free resort -- preventive care last year. texans on medicare have saved $223 million on a drug -- prescription drugs since it was effected. do you support taking away all these benefits that are very popular with texans? he went to take them away by trying to repeal this law? >> i believe we should repeal this law for two reasons. number one, it is designed to move us inexorably towards single-payer government-provided health care. if you look every nation on earth where socialized medicine is implemented, the result has been poor quality, waiting times, and rationing, putting government bureaucrats between patients and their doctors. the second reason it should be repealed as that i think asobamacare was -- obamacare was
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rammed through in a brazen display of arrogance. it was clear it was contrary to the strong views of the majority of people. it is the only major piece of social legislation of modern times to be passed on a strictly partisan vote, only by democrats, despite the fact that brokers in virginia had elected a republican. in massachusetts, the scott brown race was effectively a referendum on obamacare. and yet this president and nancy pelosi and harry reid rammed it through. >> the question -- if you were elected, do you want these benefits that hundreds of thousands of texans now have -- to do what been taken away? >> that is not exactly right. i support as a dividend health care reform. >> the lot of the land is in the books. do you want to have it taken away? >> you cannot talk about half
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without the other half. the other half -- i think health care reform should follow if you principals. number one, it should expand competition in the marketplace. number two, it should empower patients and disempower government bureaucrats. let me give you three specific reforms -- one, allow people to purchase health insurance across state lines. that would create a true 50- state national marketplace for health insurance. for example, talking about children under 26 being on the apparent policy. if we get a true national marketplace for of insurance, those parents who wanted to purchase that coverage to purchase set. we would not need the government mandating @. >> if i understand this correctly, you want to repeal obamacare. these benefits would go away. do you believe that or not? >> this is a clear indication --
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honestly, the idea that you would repeal the affordable care act today is absolutely the worst legislative strategy you can possibly imply to do the very things to say you want to do. you do not give away your leverage. right now, with the affordable care act, we have the greatest patient benefits we have seen in 75 years. they are law. we do not have to agree about them. we do not have to give anyone leverage to do that. we do not have to deal with insurance lobbyists. we are ready won. you give away clothes in the prescription done a whole. you'll give away pre-existing conditions. you give away, and children under age 26. you give away the fact that they cannot deny coverage simply because we get sick. you give away the right of women not to be treated as second- class citizens, as if they have
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a pre-existing condition. you would give away their right to contraceptives. you'll get all these benefits away so that you can make a political point against the president. that is not good for texas and is not good for the united states. it shows a real fundamental lack of understanding. ob your obamacare -- your complaints about obamacare, you have this conspiracy theory about the president, and he did not like the process. the end result is good things for people, living, breathing people and children. do not give away our benefits so you can make a political point. >> there were a host of accusations and mr. sadler said. most of them were not true. let me make a simple point. a few minutes ago, mr. sadler talked about his passionate on reducing spending and reducing the debt. apparently that does not come to the over $1 trillion of
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expenditures obamacare represents. mr. sadler talks about giving things away -- one of the simplest things -- principles of economics is that there is no such thing as a free lunch. everything mr. sadler said he wants to give you, everything the government is giving us, it must first take from us. that is part of why the burdens on small businesses are so great. there are so many small businesses, even now, beginning to eliminate health care coverage because of these costs. >> let me ask you one question. if obama is reelected, president obama, and democrats hold on to the senate , there is no way you goe repeal every syllable obamacare. what then? >> it will be very difficult if that happens. that is why it is important that we defeat barack obama in november and that we retire harry reid in november.
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one of the biggest differences between my opponent and me would be the very first vote mr. sadler would cast if he were elected, which would be to vote for harry reid to be majority leader. harry reid has been the most irresponsible majority leader we have ever seen. the last three years, under his leadership, the senate has not passed a budget. >> i have to respond to this. i do not know who i would vote for majority leader, but we know who you not vote for, john cornyn. if the republicans gain control of the senate -- you have said twice, on two occasions, he would not guarantee you would support john cornyn. that is because your money comes from jim demint. if you are interested texas, how could do not support our senior senator majority leader in the abandoned the majority party if the republican party? you'll not commit to him. >> mr. cruz? >> if mr. sadler suggests that
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as a criteria voters should use, who will stand more closely with john cornyn, that is not a complicated question. john is enthusiastically supporting me with in this campaign. he is campaigning on the road with me. >> the question is whether you would support him. >> we will try one more time. >> would you vote for john cornyn as majority leader of the set? >> he is not running for majority leader. >> would you vote for him? >> i know you are believing you are cross-examining a witness to to just answer my question. yes or no. >> i know you are leaving -- yes or no. >> let me know when you are done. >> give me a response, what ever it is, and then will move monday to answer my question.
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why what you answer? >> because you keep interrupting. >would you like an answer? >> tommy. -- tell me. >> out be happy to move on. >> he will give you a response. >> john cornyn is a very good man and i look forward to working very closely to represent the state of texas and conservative principles. mr. sadler -- you want to ask to john cornyn is supporting. he has been campaigning -- >> you will not answer the question. >> i look forward to working with him side-by-side. let me ask you, are you suggesting that you would not vote for a democrat as majority leader? >> i am telling you this. if i was a republican, i would vote for john cornyn. but all your money comes from jim demint and the super pac.
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that is his biggest competition. we all know that. you will not answer the question. >> jim demint has made it clear he is not running for leadership. what i said, i said i think it would be presumptuous for me to commit to a leadership vote on -- until the election. you showed no hesitancy -- >> we are going to go on. they will sort out their leaders in the next session. we are tentatively going to move on to emigration -- immigration. mr. sadler, stopping illegal immigration, there have been proposals like tripling the size of border patrol or build an expensive fences or walls. however, there are 11.5 million illegal residents in our country
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today. 1.6 million in texas alone. the support a path to citizenship -- do you support a path to citizenship for people here illegally enter yes i do. our border, a lot of texans may not know, el paso is the safest city its size in america. our border is a great economic engine, a great cultural factor, and we cannot stick our head in the sand any longer. we need to secure our borders. we should do that. that is our right. we have the military to do that, right there in el passer with equipment available to do so. by that, we have surveillance techniques capable that we can utilize. the federal government should be doing it. but we have to -- we should have already passed the dream act for these children in this state who through no fault of their own
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are here. they have no country. all they want is the american dream. ted likes to talk about liberty, but he only wants liberty for people he agrees with. liberty for these kids means becoming a citizen. why we turned them down over and over is beyond me. we should pass the greenback. finally, we should have a worker program to identify people here. they should pay taxes. then we should have some kind of clear pathway. it does not mean the front of the line. we can make whatever requirements we want. but we cannot continue to stick our head in the sand. this is too important, too important for our state. if we do not do anything, we will have the same discussion. >> mr. cruz, do you support a path to citizenship 41.6 million illegal immigrants in texas? >> i do not. -- for the 1.6 million illegal immigrants in texas? >> and i do not. sadler for running
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as an unapologetic liberal. he supports amnesty for these illegals. i do not. he supports obamacare. i do not. mr. sadler has opposed second amendment rights. i fight for second amendment rights. >> what does that have to do with? >> mr. sadler has championed on income tax and the state of texas. i oppose that. there is a sharp difference. it gives texans a clear choice between what is right the -- right direction. >> so what would you do for the illegal immigrants here? do you see that as a problem? >> the texas home-building and restaurant industries are sensitive to that. >> immigration should have a staged approach. we have to get serious about security and stopping illegal immigration. i don't think either party has been serious about immigration. both parties have demagogued on
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it, but they have used it to rally their base rather than rolling up their sleeves in solving the problem. we need to remain a nation that does not as welcome, but celebrates are immigrants. over 50 years ago, my father came as an immigrant when he was 18, not speaking english, working as a dishwasher. >> i want to know, again, what would you do it for the illegal immigrants already here? mitt romney says self-deport during the primary. do you agree with that? >> i think the first thing we need to do is secure the borders, fix the problem. but i said is it -- is a staged approach. this second step related to that is put in place a strong
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verifying system so employers will face sanctions for hiring people illegally pay if they -- be rewarded for complying. if we secure the borders, that is how we solve that problem. >> you tell some allies, it is unbelievable. you have accusations against me that are unbelievable. do you hunt? when i say about the second amendment stuff -- >> is it true or false you voted against our concealed carry? >> i support the second amendment? >> true or false. >> i can engage in the same process you did. did you vote against our concealed carry act? >> i do not want my grandmother who carries a pistol to be a felon. >> that is a sharp difference. i got the freedom fund award for
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supporting the second amendment. >> he wants to talk all night, but the fact of the matter is that i am a big second amendment supporter. i have four boys to hunt. i hunt. i have defended the second amendment. you did not answer my question if you even hunte. >> we are trying to get a response to the question of illegal immigrants. with the response? >> he went into a lecture about his father -- >> you made your point. >> the second amendment, all kinds of stuff. it is not my point -- it is in response to what he said. >> let him finish. >> do you disagree? >> i have stated my position on immigration and on the border. you have the worst policy for the border of anyone running for the night states senate. we have a culturally diverse
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state. we have to resolve these issues so we can move forward as a state. you are sticking your head in the sand, about amnesty and things like that -- that does not help the situation. that does not help our border region. we have over $1 billion of legitimate commerce traded across the border every single day. yet you are scaring the daylights out of our border communities because of your policy. you even disagree with your wife, who served on a committee of the north american union of the mexico, united states, and candidates, -- canada. >> i am sorry, mr. sadler, that you feel obliged to attack my wife. >> i am not attacking her. you disagree with her. >> i think that is unfortunate you are willing to go there. >> i am not attacking her. it is a document that she worked for condoleezza rice with.
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>> you are talking over each other. silence, please. i'll let you respond, then we will begin to wrapup. begin. >> my broader point -- there is a sharp difference between mr. sadler and me. his policies, whether supporting gay marriage, supporting an income tax in the state of texas, and mr. stat -- sablan used to routinely introduced himself as being the guy who supports income-tax. >> you said i introduced myself around the state as a person who supports income tax. that is an absolute lie. >> note it is not. >> yes it is. >> i never supported an income- tax. i had the responsibility of looking at the tax system of texas, something he would not know anything about because you have never served in a legislature. this was to serve -- pay for our
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children's education. i had to look at every single tax available, a sales-tax and income-tax, you name it. that is something the lieutenant governor of the time said was our responsibility. you would not know anything about it. what you do not do is do your job as a legislator, worried problems will come along later, to try to run a campaign. >> i do not blame you. there is nothing else to suggest that. i am sorry, mr. sadler, i think you live. -- lied. i am sorry you want to attack me personally. i do not intend to board is a bit. -- reciprocate. there's a sharp policy different between the policies you have advocated and are advocating. i also think --
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>> if you will stop him in a reasonable time -- >> we only have two minutes left ear. we will try to wrap up. mr. cruz, if you are successful, you will be the junior senator for texas. as i have said before, there is a chance that by then obama will be reelected any chance the democrats will maintain control of the senate. given the fact that you said earlier that you do not like to compromise, how can you be effected in that landscape? >> the premise of your question is not exactly right. i never said i do not like to compromise. i said my philosophy is the same as regular's if they offer you have a love, you take it. i am happy to compromise with everyone. i would compromise if they are solving the problem.
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if they are shrinking spending and shrinking the debt. if god forbid barack obama is reelected and harry reid remains majority leader, i will fight every day to defend texas and free-market principles. i think there's a very real possibility that the obama administration will go directly after fracking, which is opening enormous oil and gas resources. >> mr. sablan, if you are elected, -- sadler, you will join a most republican delegation from texas. how can you be effective or most of the members disagree with your policies? >> i do not in most of them would disagree with my policies. i've the history of bipartisanship. it is a record of honor and distinction. i was named by your newspaper one of six best legislators. every single law was passed in a bipartisan manner, with a republican governor, democratic -- republican senate, democratic house.
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that is the value of my record. when you are looking at these two candidates this is a person who has never been elected to anything. i have a record you can look at. bipartisan record that you can look at. >> this election is a clear choice between the obama democrats, more spending, more control, and going back to our founding freedoms. >> we need to get out of here. thank you as always. >> thank you and thank you to both candidates. we want to leave you with a final note -- early voting begins oct. 22. the election is november 6. that does it for the belo debate from victory park in dallas. have a good night, everybody. >[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> president obama and mid romney will debate here tonight
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at the university of denver. preparations are underway. reporters are looking at what it might look like. tomorrow night's debate focuses on domestic policy, with a segment on the role of government and health care. another journalist writes, after the opening answer, is up for moderator's to decide when a moderator has gone on for too long. our coverage begins tomorrow night with a preview at 7:00 eastern. at 9:00, jim lehrer moderates the debate. after the debates, your calls, e-mail, and tweets. you can follow our live coverage on c-span, c-span radio, and online at c-span.org. coming next, a preview of the presidential debates. scholars examined whether presidential debates still matter. that is followed by a journalist howard kurtz looking at the role of social media in the 2012 elections.
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another live debate on c-span 2 tonight between jay inslee and rob mckenna. it is considered one of the most -- closest governor races in the country. live on c-span 2 at 10:00 p.m. eastern. president obama and mitt romney are preparing for their first debate. we examine their this hour-long program begins with an update from wall street journal correspondent. >> laura meckler, as we look at the first of three presidential debates, this one taking place on the campus of the university of denver, this has been the debate season of expectation by the obama and romney campaign. what has happened? >> the expectations are being
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set on two different levels. you have the obama and ronnie campaigns talking about how great the other guy is. the people in the obama camp cannot stop praising mitt romney. they do not like him in any other way. they think he is a brilliant debater. same on romney's side. they talk about how obama is a debate champion. and how he has set the standard. what they are trying to do is lower expectations for their own performance and talk about their own flaws a bit and raise expectations for the other guy hoping that we will judge the debate itself with that in mind. there is another set of expectations. how important are these debates? you have the romney campaign in a position where they need a game-changing moment. then you have the obama campaign saying this is just another moment for us to have another conversation with the american people. that is a downplaying of the
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expectations. >> you have been reporting about the separation is taking place for months, most notably when mitt romney was down during the democratic convention. who is helping mitt romney and who is helping president obama? >> mitt romney is being held by a bunch of people. you have senator robb portman playing the role of barack obama. it is his job to get under romney's scan the way they expect obama to get under romney's skin. on the obama side, you have two white house veterans who are running the debate prep for president obama. you have senator john kerry, who has been there himself. >> what happens during these mock debates? >> they do not talk a lot about
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what happens during these. what they try to do is try to set a situation that is as realistic as possible for the actual debate. they do it at the same time and night the debate will take place. they set up a set just like it will look like in denver. they are used the environment. they have somebody to play the moderator and ask questions. obama does not like sound bites. they force him to give answers. they do whatever they can to simulate the debate situation. >> you quote a former chief of staff to boast -- to vice- president alkyl and joe -- al gore and joe biden. let me read some of his points.
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-- can you elaborate? >> sure. he is not really specifically using this advice for romney or obama, although i have no doubt many of these tips are being passed on to president obama. it is interesting. that was my first short summary of what he has to say. he went into more debt -- depth about each one of those things. impressions of the debate are formed very early. in the first half hour. a lot of the reporters will be writing their stories in the first half hour. you need to come out strong. if there is something you want
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to say, you have to say it right away. you suggest candidates, when they come out to the sage, right down three points they want to make. when you are watching the debates, you see that. talking points in response to any sort of question. the idea of do not debated gotrator is do not say, he more time, i need more time. those things may be true but it doesn't look good. >> are those moments magnified in a nationally televised presidential debate? i think everything is. at. that is the issue. whatever you say, it is such a small moment. the president checking his watch.
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it looks like he had somewhere else to be. it did not come off well. any small moment can be easily magnified, significant or not. >> many people refer to the 1960 debate between richard nixon and john kennedy as the first impression that each candidate made to the voters. in 2000, same thing between al gore. the split screen showing him signing to the responses of george w. bush. >> one of the things both campaigns talk about is this is a possible advantage for governor romney bbecause there s an elevated factor for him. he is on the same stage as the government -- as the president. these debates to make an impression. sometimes they have a lasting impression.
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often, they do not. it is an opportunity, one of the few moments in the campaign, the conventions are another, but this is the last opportunity that both candidates have to speak such -- to such a large audience at once. >> laura meckler, thank you for being with us. we have warren decker. joining us from boston, a professor alan schroeder. he has 50 -- 50 years of high risk tv. what makes a good debate and a good debater? >> i think the difference between a really good debate from my standpoint, intercollegiate debate, and debates we see at the presidential level is that a really good debate would be characterized by some depth of clash and arguments back and
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forth between the two. a lot of that is missing from presidential debate. the testing of ideas comes from that clash. without that clash, i think the debates to not serve quite the punch. in presidential debates, the primary function they serve is to fill in the blanks in between, give the challenger and opportunity to be on the same stage, as laura was indicating. they serve a valuable function. comparing them to the types of debates at the collegiate level is unfair, i think. >> alan schroeder, you called this a high risk television. why? >> it is a television show more than a traditional debate. a debate is the word we have used. back in 1961 they were doing the first one, the networks did not
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want to use the word debate because they thought it was misleading. they wanted to call it a discussion. it is high-risk because it is one moment during the campaign were the candidates are in a situation that they do not have 100% control over. they have control over their own performance but not what the other person will do. it is a juxtaposition of the choreographed and the spontaneous. that is what makes this so interesting. >> we have pulled together a couple moments from past debates as they campaign for presidency in previous years. you want to begin with october 15, 2008. here is part of the 2008 debate. >> the conversation i had with joe the plumber, what i said to his -- to him was, five years ago when you were not in a position to buy your business, you knew. what i want to do is make sure
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the plumber, the nurse, the firefighter, the teacher, the young entrepreneur who does not have money, i want to give them a tax break now. that requires us to make important choices. not only to 98% of small businesses make less than $250,000, but i also want to give them additional tax breaks because they are the drivers of the economy. they produce the most jobs. >> you know what senator obama and adopt in a conversation with joe. we need to spread the ball for around. -- the wealth around. we will take it joe's money, give it to president obama, and let him spread it around. i want to know the plumber to spread it around. -- want joe the plumber to spread it around. i want small businesses, that would receive an increase in
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their taxes right now. why would you want to increase anybody's taxes right now? why would you want to do that? when we have such a tough time. the small business people are going to create jobs unless you take the money from them and spread the wealth around. i will not do that in my administration. >> if i could answer the question. number one, i want to cut taxes for 95% of americans. it is true that my current supporter warren could afford to pay a little more in taxes. in order to give additional tax cuts to joe the plumber before he was at the point where he could make to hundred $50,000. exxon mobil made $12 billion record profits over the last several quarters. they can afford to pay a little more so ordinary families who
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are trying to figure out how they will afford food, save for educations,college they need a break. nobody likes taxes. i would prefer none of us have to pay taxes, including myself. ultimately, we have to pay for the investments that make this economy strong. everybody's raise taxes. the fact is, businesses and america today are paying second highest tax rate of anywhere in the world. our tax rates for business in america is 35%. ireland, and 11%. where are the company's going to go where they can create jobs and where they can do best in business? we need to cut the business tax rate in america. we need to encourage business. of all times america, we need to cut people's taxes. encourage business, create jobs. not spread the wealth around. >> professor alan schroeder, you
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watched that exchange. what is your take away? >> a couple of things. you get a sense of how relentlessly message to john mccain is. he used the term spread the wealth of around three times. another thing that strikes me is how obama is making eye contact with became the entire time he is talking. he looks right at them. there was a lot of discussion from the earlier debates in 2008 that mccain was having a hard time making like act -- making eye contact. it came off as rude. another thing that jumps out on me is the contrast of the youthful obama and a much more senior mccain. obama actually was more the adult in my opinion in that relationship in that he was very calm and cool under fire. mccain, although that last debate was his best, he had moments where he was a little
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erratic and some of those earlier debates. >> you said, both president obama and governor romney share a sense of trepidation about going mano-a-mano on live television. how may it went up boxing them in? >> neither one of them has and enjoyment of debating. that is a weird word to use. i think the ones who are really good at it and the ones who really come across of the people who get up on that stage and cannot wait to be there and are eager to make their case. bill clinton was like that. ronald reagan was like that. these two are not like that. for them, this is more, please do not let me do anything wrong, than, what can i do right? as was discussed earlier, he needs a dramatic moment to shift the momentum. if he is intimidated by the experience or feeling boxed in,
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he is less likely to do that. for obama, it is more a question for maintaining his lead. he does not want to do anything right now that reverses the trajectory he is on. i would expect he is a literate -- a little timid as well. >> if you look at past debates, one dealing with policy, the d, the with gerald forwar other is more style, where obama made a joke about his age. how much is policy and how much a style in these debates? >> i think probably my judgment would be a lot of the stylistic -- a lot of it is stylistic. it is the way they come across to the voters. it is not necessarily as much what they are saying as how they are saying it. every once in awhile, it is itchly more of a case of glti
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avoidance. to do with lot with their handlers. responding and reminding them that the one thing they want to avoid is making any huge mistakes. i think probably, going back to the question in terms of style over substance, that what we would prefer in some ways to hear a lot about, detailed explanations about how each person is going to handle the economy, for example, that ultimately, given the times than they have, style is going to be a huge part of it. >> we looked for a couple of examples of mitt romney campaigning in a general election debate. here is one exchange between
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mitt romney and senator kennedy. >> it was determined by a toss of the coin that mr. romney would pose the first question to senator kennedy. >> my impression has been you have followed a campaign as soon as the primary was over of trying to divert the voter's attention from the issues at hand and instead making personal attacks on me as unfounded. they are characterized as untrue, unfair, and sleazy. 12 are women in my firm. you are wrong. he said we would give no benefits to americans. we have 40,000 employees in firms i am associated with to give health-care benefits appeared only part-time do not have health care benefits. that happens to be the same -- the same as your firm. a strike as you criticize me for. you know they were strikers of a company we were not investigated in -- invested in perry purveyed that -- you parade that are
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around as if it is my problem. i am a fan of the minimum wage. when will this end? [applause] >> i would have thought mr. romney would avast me what i was going to do for working families in massachusetts, how we would get our economy on the road, expressing differences, talking about the real measures that .ere going to affect children i will provide all the documents and you asked for. i hope you tell me where you provide health insurance for your companies overseas. finally, let me say this. it was set well yesterday. "he is a distinct , former matter. former centered -- former
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senator of united states. let's talk a lot health care, education, training, new jobs, infrastructure, our different visions for massachusetts. that is what the people of massachusetts want to talk about. that is what i think they want to hear about. >> i want to know why you spend millions of dollars showing advertisements of strikers and the company i had nothing to do with, talking about staples, one of the finest companies in the state of massachusetts that employs 1200 people here. why you spend millions of dollars doing that is beyond me if you are so innocent in talking about the issues. that is all i have talked about up until one week ago when we revealed from an article in one of the boston papers something
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about your blind trust that appeared dnot to be so blind. [laughter] [applause] >> i will provide those in the detail. , about the minimum wage. you had a different opinion when you were talking on national television. i will talk about why you would meet with the strikers with that flim flam deal of yours. i am bothered by the pain of massachusetts. you may be frustrated, but your pain in this advertisement and my pain in your advertisement pales in comparison to what is happening in this city, where people cannot get jobs. if you take a great deal of satisfaction about exchanging papers about this, i would say about your advertisement,
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about the washington investment, my nephew and i have blind trusts. we have no control over those trusts. we conform with the ethics committees. mr. romney, the kennedys are not in public service to make money. we have paid too high price in our commitment to the public services. >> alan schroeder, a lot to look at in that debate back and forth between mitt romney and ted kennedy. both are talking points. >> absolutely. romney, it is kind of interesting. there is something he is doing very well as something he is doing wrong. the thing he is doing well is he is not the least bit intimidated by the stature of senator kennedy. he is getting as good as he gets. here -- there is not a hint of
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nervousness. on the other hand, what seems to have him exercised in this clip is that he personally was being attacked in those ads. that is what has upset. kennedy turns that around and says, wait a minute, why did he not ask me something about the needs of the voters? it is a bunch of me, me, me. at mehing that jumps out of m is kennedy has that line of what you told your fund-raisers and what you said on national television, which is exactly the issue that got him in trouble with the tape of the 47%. >> you pointed out you never want to give your opponent an opening. did that happen in that exchange? >> i think what really happened in that exchange between the two of them is that kennedy was able to shift his answer he was giving back to the ground he
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wanted. he really did not give a direct answer to what romney was saying. romney was fairly forceful in making the points he was making. kennedy did not really respond to those until the very last part of his answers. i think it is also pretty interesting that one of the things kennedy did was to remind people of the high price the kennedys had paid for their service, which was a pretty decent emotional appeal in some ways. it is reminiscent of what he is -- one of the comments he made at the end of his televised speech after the incidents where he used that history to his favor. i think he did a good job of diffusing the attacks of romney.
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it is kind of dangers in a political debate to go on the attack too much. particularly in a presidential debate, where the incumbent kind of has the high ground and the challenger is the person who really has to bring that fight to them. i think it is a difficult situation. >> it was about a week and a half after the financial meltdown in wall street in which stocks plummeted because of what happened because of the leading banks. the first debate is taking place on september 28. we want to show the moderator of the debate on the campus university of -- denver this year. he is questioning about what happened on wall street and how he would react. >> let me begin with something that was said in the 1952
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presidential campaign. "we must achieved both security and solvency. the foundation of military strength is economic strength." with that in mind, the first lead question. gentleman, at this very moment tonight, and where do you stand on a financial recovery plan? >> thank you very much. thank you to the commission and the university for hosting us tonight. i cannot think of a more important time to talk about the future of the country. we are at a defining moment in our history. our nation is involved in two wars. we are going to the worst financial crisis since the great depression. although we have heard a lot about wall street, those of you on main street have been struggling for a while. you recognize this could have an
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impact on all sectors of the economy. you are wondering how it will effect my job, my house, my retirement savings, to send my children to college. we have to move swiftly and wisely. i put forward a series of proposals to make sure we protect taxpayers as we engage in this upper -- in this important effort. we have to make sure we have oversight over the whole process. $700 billion is a lot of money. number two, we have to make sure taxpayers, when they are putting their money at risk, have the possibility of getting that money back and gains if the market and when the market returns. number three, we have to make sure none of that money is going to pad ceo bank accounts. number four, we have to make sure we are helping homeowners, because the root problem here
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.as to do with t we have to recognize this is the final verdict on eight years supported by senator mccain. that we can tread regulations and consumer protections and give more to the most and somehow prosperity will trickle down theorit has not worked. i think the fundamentals of the economy has to be measured by whether or not the middle class is getting a fair shake. that is why i am running for president. that is what i hope we will talk about tonight. >> thank you. thank you to everybody. i have a sad note tonight. senator kennedy is in the hospital. he is a dearly beloved friend to all of us. our thoughts and prayers go out. i also want to thank the university of mississippi for hosting us tonight.
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i have been not feeling too great about a lot of things lately. so have a lot of americans facing challenges. i am feeling better tonight, and i will tell you why. we are here tonight at this debate, and we are seeing for the first time in a long time republicans and democrats together sitting down, trying to work out a solution to this fiscal crisis we are in. have no doubt about the magnitude of this crisis. we are talking about the years on main street and people who will lose their jobs and credits and homes. i have been around a little the point is we are finally seeing republicans and democrats sitting down and negotiating together.
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this package has transparency in it. it has to have options for loans to failing businesses rather than the government taking over those loans. it has to have a package with a number of other essential elements to it. >> george mason university. that was the first question focusing on the financial meltdown. the response by senator obama and senator mccain. >> i think the question indicated that he had done a certain amount of research and set the question up well. i think it was probably the most important question that was on people's mind at that time. i think obama's response to it was extremely good. it was detailed, it had a lot of information in it, and it explained pretty much the
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failure as he perceived it of the trickle-down economics we have been experiencing over those last eight years. the response, i thought mccain could have perhaps responded a little bit more directly to the individual points obama was making. his more generic response was not quite as effective as it could of been. i think overall, in that particular in a change, i probably would of scored the one for obama. the whole thing was more characterized by a lot more of an uplifting kind of answer. here is what we can do about this. i think the mccain response was a little bit more, this is a sobering moment and we have a lot of problems, but not a lot of solutions coming out of the
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answer that i heard. >> alan schroeder, the difference is we will have a sitting president debating governor mitt romney. is it different when it is a sitting president or whether it was george w. bush or ronald reagan or bill clinton? do they approached these debates differently or do the american people view it differently when you have a sitting president? >> i think so, yes. one of the things that happens is the incumbent is at somewhat of a disadvantage being placed on an equal footing as the challenger, as we talked about before. incumbents have typically had a very rough time in the first debate. i am thinking back to jimmy carter in 1980. ronald reagan in 1984. george h. w. bush in '92. all of these guys who had been in the presidency, they got on that debate stage and came face- to-face with the challenger. it is rattling. they all had a very difficult time getting through the first
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debate. in each case, they had to up their game as the series went forward. >> you say, "the morning after the debate, will the media the talking about knockout punches? who knows? a little boldness might make good politics." what do you mean? >> i mean this idea of not approaching this debate as an awful obstacle you have to get over but taking advantage of that opportunity. even for the guys like romney and obama who are used to being on television and addressing huge audiences, these are some of the largest audiences they will ever face in their entire political careers. it is a shame to not take advantage of that. i understand why they are reluctant to do anything to dramatic or too theatrical. on the other hand, it is a platform that could be taken
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advantage of if they so choose. i think other debaters like reagan and clinton have understood that better. >> more than 20 primary debates for mitt romney, including this one that aired on cnn. the moderator questioning mitt romney on his taxes. >> you mentioned the democratic attacks. i want to ask you to go back in history. back in 1967, your father said a ground breaking standard in american politics. he released his tax return. he released them for not one year, but for 12 years. when he did that, he said, one year to be a fluke. when you release yours, will you follow your father's example? >> may be. [laughter] i do not know. i will take a look. audience: boo!
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>> i will be happy to release them. i know there are some who are very anxious to see if they cannot make it more difficult for a campaign to be successful. i am not going to apologize for being successful. [applause] i am not suggesting these people are doing that. i know the democrats will go after me on that basis. that is why i want to release these things at the same time. my dad, born in mexico, toward, did not get a college degree. i could have stayed in detroit like him and gotten pulled up in the car business. i went up on my own. i did not inherent money. what i have, i earned. [applause] , i will be able to talk to president richard obama in a way
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no one else can about how the economy works. we are one nation under god. >> that did become a debate moments in this primary season. >> right. it is an interesting moment. it is a moment i think may replicate itself in general election debates. i cannot imagine obama will let this question and the tax returns go unremarked. what you see there is a couple of things. romney really pivots. he uses the initial question to swing us over to obama and the democrats and how they are against wells, supposedly. there is also the reaction from the audience. one of the thing that was striking about this year's round of primary debates was the role of that live audience and how they became the influence and how people are perceiving them.
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in general election debates, the audiences seem to be much more behave. clearly, the audience played a big part in the whole tone of that clip you showed. >> warren decker, these candidates have lines and talking points. how you come across conversationally rather than sound like somebody who is regurgitating the talking points you have been rehearsing? >> that is probably one of the most difficult things you could ever do. i think it is one of those things that you can try to do it and improve your ability to do it by practicing a lot and trying to play on moments that would allow you to convey yourself well. the person that was really good at that was clinton. he was very quick and he sounded like he was talking to the people most of the time rather than trying to give more
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prepared types of comments. at the same time, he was quick to get his message across. i think it is one of those things that is really difficult to do. i think it may well be very difficult for both romney and obama to do that. i am not sure they are quite in the same ballpark as clinton was. i probably would, if i was trying to figure out which one might do that better than the other, i would probably give obama just a little bit of an edge because he comes off as being a little bit softer and a little bit more connected in some ways than mommy does. that is a problem with romney. it is probably one of the biggest problems he needs to overcome. >> the moderator posting his
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12th presidential debate. in 2008, he was trying to get both senator obama and senator mccain to address each other and answer some of the questions. >> let's go back to my question. how do you stand on the recovery plan? talk to each other about it. we have five minutes. we can negotiate a deal right here. do you favor the plan, senator obama? senator mccain, are you in favor of this plan? >> we have not seen the language yet. i think there is constructive work being done out there for the viewers who are watching. i am optimistic. the question i think we need to ask ourselves is how did we get into this situation in the first place? two years ago, i warned that because of the relaxed regulation, we would potentially have a problem in trying to stop the abuses and mortgages that
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were taking place at the time. last year, i wrote to the secretary of treasury to make sure he understood the magnitude of this problem and to call on him to bring all the stakeholders together to try to deal with it. the question i think we have to ask ourselves is yes we have to solve this problem short term. we will have to intervene. there is no doubt about it. but we will also have to look at how is it that we have shredded so many regulations, we did not set up a 21st century regulatory framework to deal with these problems, and that is in part having to do with an economic philosophy that says the regulation is always bad. >> will you vote for the plan? >> i hope so. >> you will vote for the plan? >> sure, but let me point out i also wonder about freddie mac and corporate greed and access and ceo pay and all of that.
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a lot of us saw this coming. there is also the issue of responsibility. present ought -- president eyes -- president eisenhower wrote out letters. one of them congratulated the great members of military allies that have conducted and succeeded in the greatest invasion in history still to this day and forever. he wrote out another letter. that was a letter of resignation to the united states army for the failure in normandy. somehow, we have lost that accountability. i have been heavily criticized because i called for the resignation of the chairman of the securities and exchange commission. we have got to start also holding people accountable and we have got to reward people who succeed. somehow, in washington today, and i am afraid on wall street,
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greed is rewarded, access is rewarded, and corruption -- rewarded.s >> do you have something to say to senator mccain about what he just said? >> i think senator mccain is absolutely right we need more responsibility. we need that not just when there is a crisis. we have had years in which the economic ideology has been what is good for wall street but not what is good for main street. there are folks out there who have been struggling before this crisis took place. that is why it is so important that as we saw this short-term problem, we look at the underlying issues that have led for wages to go down, for health care system that is broken, energy policies that are not working, because 10 days ago,
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john said they are sound. >> say to him? [laughter] >> are you afraid i would not hear him? >> i am trying to get you to talk to each other. >> unless we are holding ourselves accountable day in and day out, not just where there is a crisis for folks who have power and influence and to hire lobbyists, but for the nurse, the teacher, the police officer who, at the end of each month, they have a financial crisis going on. they will have to take out extra debt to make their mortgage payments. we have not been paying attention to them. >> professor alan schroeder, your take away. >> in 2008, the campaign's
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negotiated agreement -- an agreement that allowed them to talk to each other. they did not want to do it. you see jim is trying to pull teeth to get them to talk to each other. i do a lot of research on television -- televised campaigns among the world. -- around the world. the candidates spent the entire debate talking to each other in past debates. it is like a tennis or ping-pong game. the moderator's get out of the way and have a very little role. in ameri, the tradition has been candidates are nervous about confronting each other and being too aggressive or coming off as rude. they really do not like that dialogue. we will see what happens this year. the format for the 2012 debates calls for open-ended periods of discussion.
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that will force the candidates to engage with each other. >> with more of the -- with more than half of the debate focusing on jobs and economy, both senator obama and senator mccain were in the u.s. senate. they are used to addressing each other from the senate chamber. what is different for the debate? >> is very easy to cross the line of what is acceptable and acceptably aggressive into something that becomes rude. i am thinking back during hilly -- hillary clinton's campaign. rick walked over to her podium with a pledge he wanted her to sign. it looked really bad. it was a moment of what not to do. it crossed the line. that is what it is. we were talking earlier about how the candidates approach this with a lot of trepidation. they will have to talk to each
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other. in their way of looking at it, it is one more thing to worry about. >> this is from december of last year. warren decker, we will get your reaction to this as mitt romney was asked about a question and then placed this thabet. >> i am listening to you, and i am hearing you say the right things, but i read your first book. it said your mandate, in massachusetts, which should be the model for the country, and i know it came out in the reprint of the book. i am just saying, you refer to individual mandates. >> you have race that before. >> it was true then. >> i will tell you what. [laughter] $10,000 that? bet? >> i am not a betting man.
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>> i say, in my view, each states should be able to fashion their own program. i go on to talk about the state's. i have not said in that book anything about our plans being a national model of propose innovation. the right course for america is to let individual states -- this is a remarkable nation. this idea of federalism is so extraordinary. let's straight -- let's states have their own solution. >> warren decker, another debate moment from the primary. why did that resonate? >> probably, that, more than anything else probably separated romney from a lot of
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the country when he was able to extend a wager of $10,000, which was probably much more money than a lot of the voters will amass. i think that was about as close to being a gaffe as i would label them. when you make a wager, if the wage or $5, $10, i think it probably would have left a very different impression. when he made that wager at first, and then everything after that, i think, the answer really did not have that much of an impact after that because i think most people were still focused on how can somebody make a $10,000 bet as casually as this person just did? i think that is a disconnected
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that, at times like that, and including some of the comments he has made at fund-raisers and so forth, worked two separate him from the voters. >> alan schroeder, was it the fact that he said $10,000 and not a million? >> i agree. it is a weird amount to pull out of thin air. a million dollars would have been fine. 10,000. one of the things you need to think about if you are a candidate is the negative perceptions that exists about you. you do not want to say anything that reinforces a negative about you. in this case, he fell into that trap completely. we are still talking about it . >> in 2008, a democratic primary
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debate that included senator barack obama and hillary clinton. here is the exchange. >> my question to you is what can you say to the voters who see a rise in may and like it but are hesitating on electability issue where they seem to like barack obama more? >> well, that hurts my feelings. [laughter] >> i am sorry. >> but i will try to go on. [laughter] he is a very likable. i agree with that. i do not think i am that bad. [laughter] >> alan schroeder, another moment from the 2008 primary debate. >> that is actually obama's worst moment in any debate he has ever had. what is interesting is that it
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is not just that he is so bad. he does not make eye contact. it is that she is so good. she has a very funny way about her and debts of this great line and has the audience with her. there is another thing that helps her. that is the little reaction shot of chelsea clinton in the audience laughing. in general election debates, they are careful to prohibit reaction shots of family members because they do not want that to color the tone of the debate. in 1988, michael dukakis could have had help not looking so cold in his response. >> we have a professor at the george washington university, john sides. when you have those moments that reinforce a marriage, either
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good or for ill, to a candidate, how important or damaging can these be? >> candidate debates in a general election to not move the polls a general -- a lot. race.in a close debat in general, i think these dramatic moments in debates are not necessarily game changes for the average american voter. >> you wrote, usually the candidates fight to a drawl. . it is hard in that context to have a stunning victory or a terrible defeat. can you elaborate? >> the candidates spend a lot of time trying to lower their expectations about the performance and portray the
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other person as this great orator . in reality, the candidates spend a lot of time prepping for the debates and they are very good at it. they have read a lot of material and memorize a lot of material. in that context, it is hard for a candidate to really make a big enough mistake to actually swing opinion too strongly to his opponent. >> same question to all three german. alan schroeder, i will begin with you. what happens? what do you think the candidates are trying to do and how are they trying to get into debate- mode. ? >> they will still be doing mock debates. i would be very surprised if any candid has a public event. they will have last minute back and forth to get everybody in the right place.
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the candidates like to go off and be by themselves in the hour before the debate. just to have quiet time to get their heads in the right spatce for what is bound to be a very excruciating experience. imagine actually having to do that in front of 60 -- 50 million people. basically, those hours before, they want that time to themselves. there is one other quick thing they do. they do a tech check at the set. they will go up on the set and make sure everything is fine and that they are comfortable with the surroundings. that will happen at at -- that will happen at about 3:00 in the afternoon. >> how does anyone effectively prepare for a debate? >> well, i think this is probably true of just about any kind of debate. hard work is probably the best thing to do. if you are very carefully
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prepared, if you spent a lot of time studying the issues and figuring out ways to explain those to the public, i think that is a big portion of it. also, all of these practice times they have that allows them to prepare themselves for those kinds of debates. it is not an easy task. i think it will be very interesting to see how this upcoming debate plays out. >> john sides, your thoughts? >> i think the candidates obviously spent a lot of time learning, practicing, rehearsing. the goal of that is not to make a big mistake. it is probably easier to lose a debate than win one. it is a strategy of risk aversion. the debates have not consistently affected the outcome. given the consequences of
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actually losing an election, it behooves them to do as much preparation as possible, even if the debates themselves are not the game changes. >> what about the level playing field, that you have the president on the same stage with the republican nominee in a setting many people gives the challenge to the advantage? >> i think maybe it helps the challenger a little bit to be in that role. at the same time, recumbent presidency is typically win elections. they have the experience of doing this before. having a policy for the previous four years, the advantage of a very well-prepared campaign. the practice of doing this, where as the challenger has to put that campaign together on the fly. at the end of the day, each side may have a little advantage that it brings to the table, but probably those advantages cancel
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them out. that is why the two candidates can fight to a draw most times. >> you write this in your book. what will we be talking about wednesday evening and thursday morning? >> i learned a long time ago not to make predictions about debates. these are live television shows. you absolutely cannot predict what will happen. based on the history of these two debaters, neither one of them is really a flame thrower. neither one of them is particularly theatrical. their history would suggest it might be a candidate. but again, you never know. >> in terms of preparing for the debates, the moderator role. what kinds of questions should we be looking for? >> domestic policy, as i understand it. i think it with him doing the work on this, i think the moderator will be extremely well prepared. he usually is. you will find answers or
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questions that are trying to probe the differences between the two of them and probably very effectively so. >>, final thoughts? -- >> john sides, final thoughts? >> the voters are more influenced by that than the voters themselves. the media will process the debate and build that into the narrative of the campaign. that is the point the people will realize what happened. people cannot realize that gerald forward made a mistake. the news media had been talking about it. any impact the debates may have, i am just interested in the post mortem and the cable news chatter. >> john sides is a professor
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here in washington d.c. warren decker, debate director in virginia. alan schroeder, the author of "presidential debates." thank you very much for being with us here on c-span. how were debate is available on- line at c-span.org. >> i will do something the president has not been able to do, which is called china out. >> we have brought more against china in one term than the previous administration did in two. we have been winning those cases. >> wednesday, president obama and mitt romney meet in their first presidential debate. watch and engage with c-span with our live debate preview at
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7:00 p.m. eastern, followed by two ways to watch the debate at 9:00. on c-span, both candidates on- screen the entire debate. on c-span 2, multiple cameras. follow our live coverage on c- span, c-span radio, and online at c-span.org. >> coming up tonight on c-span, scholars examined whether presidential debates still matter. that is followed by a look at the role of social media. later, another chance to see the texas senate debate from tonight betwe. tomorrow on "washington journal. " abby kiesa is our guest. then were hear from robert
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erikson with a preview of tomorrow night's debate. later, an examination of the reasons why people vote. "washington journal" with this month, as the presidential cannot afford a great -- the debate, -- as the presidential candidates meet for a debate, we are asking students to submit to they are asking, what is the most important issue in the campaign, for the grand prize of $5,000. ca c-span cm competition is open to students grades6 through 12. >> the national communications association posted a panel discussion monday on what to look for during the presidential
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debates. journalists and political scholars discussed it going beyond>> beyond wins and losses, a guide to the 2012 presidential debate. this is 90 minutes. i.n.d. ceo here at the newseu -- i am a the ceo here at the newseum. is my pleasure to welcome you to an important program -- a guide to the 2012 presidential debate. we're pleased to partner with the national communications association. we think it will be very helpful to the public and beyond. a very helpful partnership we have developed with regard to our own outreach initiatives. it is very much a part of the
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mission here in the museum, and we believe those of you who visit will get a civic education does walking through the halls. we're very pleased be part of this program. i will turn it over to you. >> good afternoon. think you for joining us today. my name is nancy kid, executive director of the national communications association. and on behalf of our almost 8000 members i am pleased to welcome you to our discussion. i would especially like to thank the first amendment studio center for welcoming us. given the various ways in which communication scholarship can be useful to our citizenry from interpersonal relationship to political engagement, one of the core components of the
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national communications association mission is to facilitate the dissemination of disciplinary scholarship to a public audience. there are a few activities more important to the welfare of our nation than informed of voting, and we hope this event will serve a concept in the vital practice. it is my pleasure to introduce you to our senior moderator. mr. paul kosinski. he is a veteran journalist. co-author of the weekly national column and said the first amendment. his first presidential campaign assignment was george wallace. as he campaigned in the midwest in 1968. a founding editor of usa today, washington editor when it began in 1982. of panelists and a member of gubernatorial and senatorial debate. we're so glad he is guiding our
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discussion today, and i hope you will join me in welcoming him. [applause] >> thank you. again, we're very pleased to partner with the national communications association to sponsor this. after years of campaigning, caucuses across the nation, 27 republican primary debates that began in may 2011, here we are. ofay's before the first three president of the bids and one vice presidential meeting. the first debate between the democratic and republican candidates takes place wednesday at 9:00 eastern time. the debate will be of the university of denver featuring the president barack obama and the challenger mitt romney. this happens every four years. we enter the final hours before the debate.
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we later put them into perspective that we're going to try to do that. there is the rest of news reports over the weekend and this morning telling us how vital the debates are. we're here to offer a thought today on really helping all of us citizens on how to watch these debates and how to evaluate to start off with. the analysis may be the only certain thing we know about the debates of this point. we hope to go further than that. and assist you watching today in the studio, watching on c- span and live streaming to develop tips and tools to watch the debates. television debates began in 1960 with john f. kennedy facing vice-president nixon. the next debates were not until 1976. a commission was set up to run
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the debates. a town hall format was introduced in 1992. that will take place october 16. the final debate returns to the moderator and candidates on october 22 at lynn university of florida. on the panel today to discuss going beyond winning and losing, and we will move from my immediate left, correspondent of the new york times, abc news and nbc news and participant in the first televised debate in 1960 in chicago. andy grower "washington post" contributing writer. michael hogan.
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charles mackalain. catherine olsen, univ. of wisconsin milwaukee and director of the schools frederick program. thank you all for being with us today. we will begin the program today with a bit of advice for those of you here in the studio and those of you watching for following this on twitter. when we go to questions, there are two microphones and hope you will come down to those. if you are following us on twitter, and you have a question, we have ncadebates12. we will try to field questions from there as well as in the studio. let's watch a clip from the
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moment u.s. the question of the outset. >> mr. vice president, this is a question of executive leadership and a very important campaign issue, our like to follow this question. republican campaign slogans say it is experience that counts. implying you have had more governmental executive decision making experience than your opponent. president eisenhower has asked to give one example of a major idea of yours that he adopted. his reply was "if you give me a week, i might think of one. i did not remember." that was a month ago and he has not brought it up cents. i am wondering if you could clarify, the one put out by republican campaign leaders or the one put out by president eisenhower? >> i would suggest that if you know the president, that is
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probably a prestigious remark. dig for sfacetious remark. disclose instances in which members have made official statements to him that he is accepted or rejected. the president has always maintained, and very properly so, he is entitled to get what advice he wants from cabinets and other advisers without disclosing that to anybody, including the congress. i can only say this. through the years i have sat on the national security council. leaders. i met with the president when he made a great decision with regards to lebanon and other matters. decision. all his advisers do is to give
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counsel when he asked for it. as far as what experience counts and whether that is experience that counts, that is not for me to say. i can only say my experience is there for the people to consider. >> the world has changed a great deal since you and other correspondents based candidates in terms of how journalism and campaign. in that way? >> i would because it was passed and a great way. it was asked by charles mohr. it was a legitimate question. >> it was a legitimate question, because that was the line on the part of the
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republican party and richard nixon. and though my colleague from cbs and is referred to there has asked, i did not feel richard nixon did a complete answer. he referred to me as a non- essential question or some words of that effect. he did not answer it well. it stuck with him. it was the party line -- he was confused of not
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having the confidence of president eisenhower, because of a great way that is what the republican line was, experience that counts. >> you were free to pursue that question, right? >> no vetting of questions. i heard about the debate the day before when i was covering nixon and the south. i got on the train that went to chicago, and went in on the following monday to go wbbm cbs affiliate in chicago. was introduce ourselves to the camera. "60 minutes." that was it.
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>> in that clip richard nixon you a long answer. this. what we remember was the sweating heavily, nervous and prepare. you were in the room in that particular format. what did you see from your seat? >> i was in the room. i saw kennedy in a dark suit. at the last minute. i saw nixon in a gray suit in front of a great background. -- gray background. from time to time in the debate i did not see excess of sweat. sweat from time to time. there were old friends when they were in the house ofthey were cordial to reach other.
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i just think, and this is subjective. thought kennedy had won. those who heard it on radio, thought nixon had won. >> let's move on to a little bit later debate. the comeback of the fixture and our political campaign. the debate. let's watch the clip from 1998. >> over the years you have expressed several positions while opposing nearly all forms of government payment for it. you now say you support abortion only in the cases of rape, incest or threat to a mother's life. if abortion were to become
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illegal again, the you think the women who defy the law and have them anyway, as they did before it was ok by the supreme court and the doctors who perform them should go to jail? >> i have not sorted out the penalties, but i do know why it opposed to abortion. i favor adoption. if we can get this law changed, where we can get everyone to take the kids better sometimes unwanted and aborted, take them and put them in a family that will be loved. my position has evolved. it is continuing to evolve. it is evolving in favor of life. i have had a couple of exceptions i support. rape,, the life of the mother. sometimes people feel
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uncomfortable talking about me now. i've seen abortion used sometimes as a birth control device. the millions of the killings accumulate. this is one where you can have an honest difference of opinion. we certainly do. now i am for the sanctity of life. >> from your experience asking that question in that debate and serving on the panel uncovering debate subsequently, how do the debates impact or to some degree in have been getting a full exchange between the candidates and with the voters? >> for starters, we were told we could have follow-up questions. the way it works is the vice president gave his answer.
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michael would question and he would answer the question. for me to stop as you would naturally in an interview and say to whoever you were interviewing, could we go back? to sort this out, so would you please answer the question? it would have been a little more polite than that. he ducked the question, and it goes on today, because as we saw on the and this republican primary debate season, at some point john king from cnn was asking each of the candidates to please describe the one area in which each of them is most misunderstood, and when the question came to mitt romney, he basically said you get to ask questions you want, and i get to give the answers i want. we're seeing a lot of that now. it does not matter what the panel has asked of the candidates, but under this format the canada it will tell
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you what ever he or she wants to say and what ever point to have made at this time. props. the debate system was described by a man from abc to is trying to promote union-style debates with the candidates go after each other as a job interview with the moderator is basically the guy from h.r. or woman from a charge during the interviewing. i think this debate, the debate wednesday night has a different format. it is 90 minutes on one topic. my debate was 45 minutes on domestic corn policy. we ran long on domestic. with. i am told jim bakker was backstage yelling and up of this, let's move to form
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policy, -- foreign policy, bush's strength. the idea you will have 90 minutes on wednesday on domestic policy only is a huge improvement. you have a moderator who could actually step in and get them to move off the loop, if you will. >> i thinkt will be an interesting moment because we are seeing international questions raised, the handling of affairs in benghazi. it will be interesting to watch the moderator from cbs. >> the most important foreign- policy debate between nixon and kennedy were islands off the main island of china. those of us on the panel, we thought there were possibly an oriental dance team. [laughter]
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>> you heard it here. >> let's take a look at another clip from 1988. >> governor, it kiddy were raped -- if kitty dukakis were raped and murdered, and murdered, would you favor an irrevocable death penalty for the killer? peacoat know, i do not. i think you know i oppose the death penalty during all of my life. i do not see any evidence it is a deterrent. i think there are better and more effective ways to deal with violent crime. we have done so in my own state, and one of the reasons why we have had the biggest drop in crime of any industrial state in america and the lowest murder rates. we have work to do in this nation. we we have work to do to fight the real war, not a phony war. we have much to do to step up the war.
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>> some say that these debates are not really debates, but joint press conferences. the answer was seen somewhat determining the outcome of the election, but what they use it to people who say candidates respond with a sound bite rather than a real answer. >> this is an example where the canada it is changing the subject and were sympathetic to him. he had good reason to do it. this is an awful question. it is not just tasteless, but gotcha journalism. it does not inform the public in any way.
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he is on record having opposed the death penalty his entire career. he can say and that case i would change my position. then the headline is he is the foot locker. -- flip-flopper. instead the answers i would stick to my position on this. then the headline is he is the passionless flirt. as it was. we will get back to that, as i think is the way to go. i do not blame him for changing the subject. >> there was the criticism of responding in a policy fashion by either being outraged were responding in a personal matter. from our rhetorical standpoint of what to do when faced with the question, what should one do?
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>> that is the third option, and that is to criticize the question as newt gingrich did very effectively in the republican primaries when asked about marital problems. >> it could have said i would kill the son of a -- [laughter] >> one of the purposes of the debate was to actually try to learn something about the candidate you do not already know. what we argue about him is vacation reading included swedish land use planning. i agree absolutely with sandy. i would have wanted to kill him, but we are a nation of laws. he apparently had a brother that was killed in an automotive accident and another relative
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who was mugged. as of was that question was and of prepared as he was, that is the nature of the presidency. things will happen for which you are not prepared, and i thought it may have been an unfair glimpse, but it was also telling, and i defend the question. >> what does the canada do when a question like that is posed the comes out of left field? it does reach to sometimes the heart of your character or personality? >> i think he did the right thing. there was no pause. there was no interruption. he went straight to the main point of the argument, which is i oppose the death penalty. even under the circumstances. that it drove off from there. this really speaks to what the public expects.
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to see how they react under pressure. >> i think what he probably should have done is answer the question on two levels. one would be my personal reaction would be horrible, i want to kill the person, but we are a nation of laws. i think what people were looking for was a telling sign of what kind of leader he would be, and did not connect with us as someone who feels the same way or with this and that that you and i would feel. i would suggest you try to split the question and say how he would personally feel, but how is policy stanford made the same -- policy stand remains the same for good reason. >> when we look at voters trying to claim from the un televised -- these televised studio where you sit down and settle down and unrestrained from what you see the box. the debate moderators, non- verbal cues, the way canada told -- candidates hold
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themselves and react are all of what goes on. we have a clip from 1980. i would like you to pursue the question of what people should react. >> president reagan began campaigning around the nation against medicare. now we have an opportunity to insurance. with the emphasis on prevention of disease. emphasis on outpatient care, not in patient care. holding down the hospital care for those that are ill. emphasis on catastrophic health insurance so that of a family is economically because of a very high medical bills, insurance would help pay for it. these are the kind of elements of a national health insurance important to the people. such a proposal.
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>> here we go again. what i oppose medicare, there was another piece of legislation before the congress. i happen to favor the other piece of legislation and thought it would be better for the senior citizens to provide care that actually passed. >>you see president reagan smiling while carter is giving that answer. you are already casting doubt on what is being said. viewers are already touting what is coming out of carter's mouth as he was saying. the second thing it does is you are already casting doubt on
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what is being said. actual line that we all comport themselves mean something and tells us something, one of the things i each other, what mitt romney stand there and say obama you are friends of freeloaders. will he say, romney, you are a serial tax evader. we have someone like reagan the comes off with a good line and response. we have an outgoer who is huffing and sighing. it is a good part of being able and reacting under pressure.
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which one looks more forth. >> george bush looking at his watch as one of my favorites. >> maybe we have all become attuned to this. comfortable with media and those being personal habits. if you watch the opening of the debate, and john kennedy was asked the first question. the format was after the introduction by howard k. smith, the correspondents turned on themselves. kennedy. to the podium. he leans over and touches him onhe gets up and goes to the podium.
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today, that might be seen as a major gaffe. it is absolutely and mentioned -- not mentioned in any of the coverage of the debates. >> do we pay more attention to those inside its today, and why? >> optics that the television viewing audience sees are so very different than what you have seen inside the debate hall. for example, during the bush debate, he is short. much shorter than george bush. under the red carpeting, his people insisted that there be a -- ramps little cramped so that he would look not like queen elizabeth in front of the lectern, but almost as tall as the vice president. you see in the carter/reagan clip, jimmy carter does not look like he is left in a number of -- has slept in a number of
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days. i've read the other day that the reagan people, after they did run through of the stage and how it was set up, there was a clear that would make re did not look -- reagan look not so good good either. they measured of blue mat to cut the flare from overhead lights so that reagan will look really good. i think this is partly the actor's training, and partly a campaign that paid attention to every single detail. and it worked. >> this was a campaign that paid attention to every single>> i do not know who said this, but the observation of a particle changes the nature of the particle. it is very rare for someone to look good on television, unless there is massive preparation. i think now the television is with us 24 hours a day.
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there are no longer any two news cycles, it is 24 hours a day. it is very difficult for politicians or anyone else to look absolutely perfect, because the television camera isit shows good, bad, and indifferent. >> are we more expecting that sort of examination or revelation of the personal tics and peccadilloes? there were times we help candidates up to a special level. have we leveled to the field? >> of course we are, because there is no mystery to it. television was introduced from england. the great writer at the new yorker said that television of the air, referring to the york
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near lake erie where great debates took place. now, television did not come into politics really until 1948, the first convention. in 1952 the story goes that the colonel in chicago who worked for mayor daly went and turned around and saw the man who turned out to be the producer and ask, the people will watch this? million. colonel harvey's reaction was, we can never allow that. [laughter] >> i think that captures a
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great, which is to say many of us hope to see more, but i think know from experience now what happens, and we know by and large, if neither canada does -- candidate does anything outrageous, then attention goes to the small things that they have to talk about for the next 24 hours or election. >> are we entering an era in which the rhetorical measurements of did you lose or did you win? would you say that might be the circumstance in which candidates are, winning is nice but not losing is the thing. >> that could be the floor there looking at. for for obama this year in particular. >> the gap is the headline. -- and the gaffe is the
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headline. very much so. >> question for all of you before we move to another clip that we have going to our point of how to move beyond winning and losing. debate? i look at in the beginning? >> my perspective would be the most important thing you want to look for is democratic leadership. how does this person perform democratic leadership? we have a set of conflicting expectations that the president the democratic or ordinary, would react like we would. himself or herself to the public will and be responsive servant. people, but also somewhat
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leaderly, someone who could take charge of public problems. very delicate balance. that is often what kids overstepped. that is something i look at. or the other. george w. bush looking at his watch in the town hall format the democratic connection. he looked like he had someplace citizens. people. 2000. on of the other hand we have had candidates who overdo it on the leadership side. a good example was 1976 when gerald ford claimed there was
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not soviet domination of eastern became important. ideas good enough to be a leader. most recently, john mccain seemed to muff it on the leadership side before he even got to the debate by being willing to or suggesting the debate be canceled or postponed and work on the bailout project. once. for me, and i think this will be important this particular year, our candidates, office of problems. -- have offset -- opposite problems. no one doubts obama can relate
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the democratic party. what we're wondering is what is the leader of the park since we have a four-year pattern that did not make as much change as we had hoped. mitt romney of course is known as take charge ceo leader, but showing he is democratic, and like the rest of us, -- >> democratic with leaderly. >> he has to overcome that. challenging for both. >> you can arm wrestle. you are closer to the microphone. >> i think one of the issues the few growth industries in the united states, the legion of fact checkers will be held each candidate chews through his --
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hews to version of the truth and what the other candidate said. i think the promise of the new format does allow the two of them to mix it up. the question is, how do they call each other on what is being called truthiness? i spoke yesterday to the man who will moderate the last debate, which is foreign policy. i said what is your role of one or the other kid did it sayshe said if it is outrageous, i will step in. but in fact, it was designed to let each other a sale each other on know, that it's not the case. at the very least, it will make for a pretty good tv watching. one hopes they did not go too far afield in representing their own were their opponent's record. >> this year has been a bonanza
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for the fact checkers. i would say if the candidates did not tell so many factually inaccurate things, they could put them out of business. incident in 1976. the fact is overnight polls did statement. it was only after a week of the press incessantly talking about the incident that the polls turned around and people decided yet lost the debate. what i'd like to do -- we have a and we bring 200-300 students in to watch the debate, and then we turn it off so they can make their own minds up about the debate and not listen to the spin doctors and rely upon them to form their opinions. >> all i remember from the first debate, and there were only two candidates, not three,
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was that my naked eyes not through tv, but it seemed to me whenever nixon said, kennedy just looked at him and smirked. this played into kennedy's indian side on nixon. nixon came from a poor family. he was clumsy, and he was defending and the administration that he was not wholly in support of, the eisenhower administration. >> what i want to see is maybe nothing. maybe for the first time i will
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trying to focus on what is actually being said, instead of what is being seen, which is on. >> the legions of c-span network right now. [laughter] stand by them and offer some smelling salts. that goes to the point that people heard it on radio and television. you would listen for? >> listening for things that are set to the police said and then -- substantively said by candidates and then i can go back and verify after, to listen for claims for arguments i can go back and say is this something that is real? credible? then look out for other information that you verify these or defeats this. sets of studies in the
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communication discipline that go back and look for evidence of that of you were/listener era. what the first one found in 1987, they went back to see what actual evidence there was behind the repeated and repeated claim that nixon won the election on were watching it on tv. what they found is there was no good imperial evidence. tell. the only thing they could come up with for three rather anecdotal sources of evidence. one was from a reporter that constitution." there was no check on sample
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prize into they were committed to before the debate. they point out in the same issue, the atlanta constitution printed on the editorial page a survey that included only 15 people. the second source is for someone who wrote for the new york herald tribune. the problem with that one was that may so was covering the southern governors' conference that year. it was a hot springs, ark.. until later. he was with the governors and listen to them. they felt that nixon wanted listening on radio. whether there were watching on nixon won.
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the actual survey was the last radio sample. that is not to say listeners and prescience, we just did not have a good evidence that they did. in looking back, the story has changed over time. they went back and looked at the were much more similar to what sandler talked about. not simply who was having the right color suit on. then they traced the story through newspaper reports later. there is a 16 year gap between 1960 and 1976.
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picked up. time. substantial memory of what happened in 1960. i am not sure of their published a 2008 yet, but it has become a very simplistic lesson that i think we would be wise to be cautious of. to go what has influenced us greatly is back in 1960, we had a morning news cycle ended evening news cycle and nothing in between. now you have not just for television, but also through computers and so forth. a 24 hour per day news cycle. in the 24 hour news cycle, you air.
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form. -- dicot the electronic tapeworm. it has to be set constantly. poptry to remember whether it is a candidate or commentator whoever it utters the words, i do not know. >> when i was watching cable coverage of the trial in which there had been the announcement just before they went live, and it opened the program by saying this development has just happened, we've had a quick discussion. we're not sure what it means. they then went on for 30 minutes to discuss it, which i thought was an interesting moment. coverage. i am curious from each of you, while the debate is going on, there is now this interactive process that was possible. it did not exist -- i guess it
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was there in eight, but certainly in certainly in four. blogging. is that a good idea to have the discussion as the debate goes on? i am curious from the journalistic point of view and communications and rhetoric standpoint. >> what is interesting about the ability to put out in cyberspace your opinion of what is going on this. they have legions of people who are basically campaign tweeters. when and romney spoke at the republican convention, there were thousands of gop people just tweeting almost as she spoke of paragraph.
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really do not know how reliable that is. i always recommend that when people watched the debate, they watch it not just with those that think as they do democrats democrats. i really think they should watch it with their opponents, because what is most telling to me is not what the spin doctors say, but if you sit around with people of an opposing party, say that? because you work for obama or mitt romney, but someone who was a supporter of there's saying he should not have done that were a reat point. >> i could not agree more. that is why we do the debate watches.
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we did the students to come in. afterwards. we turn off the spin doctors, and i would be suspicious of said. the campaigns are hip to that. >> importantly, in many ways you have divided attention. i will say that i will admit to tweeting and facebooking during events and you are not listening to the entire speech and picking may be there. >> i agree with that. the thing i would say is we're
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not want to change that, but the question is how do you think about it? if you think about it as an opportunity to hold the leader's publicly accountable, then you think of it in a different way. we have come into the age of the debates being a job interview. interestingly in this type of reality tv, people do not want such and spin doctors anymore. they want to want a decision about who gets kicked off the island. there is something good to say about public engagement when it each other. >> do you recall anyone saying after ronald reagan said there you go again that whether that was spontaneous, programmed.
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you only knew it was devastating, and probably forgot what he was talking about when he said it. >> that seems an appropriate time to remind everyone about the way to answer this. we will be going to those in a moment. hashtag ncadebates12. there will forward the questions for us up here, and we will ask for those of you that want to ask a question here in the studio. we have been sitting in the viewer's chair to some degree. podium. we will talk about the format. we have the town hall in the middle of the three presidential debates. how important is that formats?
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if it is one of the tools we're third one? let's go through the panel and one do you prefer? let's start with the middle. >> i never answer the original question, so i could probably do real debate. -- keith not being real debates there are things many of you do not know about the 1958 debate team that was the national championship debate team. correct. >> i do not know. [laughter] >> the answer might be debatable. >> i am not sure we would want a real debate.
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their joint television appearances. real debate --intercollegiate debate today is a very hyper- competitive kind of activity. the top 160 words per minute. i do not think we want that. it is about winning and losing. talk about is lincoln douglas. they think that is the kind of format we want. that is a three hour debate on a single issue about the extension of slavery into the territories with these long half hour andi do not think we have the tolerance for that. something different. if we are stuck with a joint television appearance, i think early panel is created a situation where there was some showboating by young journalists try to make a name
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for themselves by asking the question that produced the big headline out of the debate. >> did any of you hear about the two party platform committee hearings? >> i remember once i said to david brinkley in the republican platform committee there was a move to raise the speed limit through the northwestern states. it was turned down because one man said hell, what used to be for me at 2 bottled beer is now a full case of beer. [laughter] >> long drive. >> i just want to finish that thought about the format. the town hall debate, it
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produced sometimes a rather inarticulate question, but it does -- i think that debate reflected the interest of the voters. >> let's take a look at that. affects everybody. obviously. it has a lot to do with interest rates. >> you are saying you personally? personally? >> i am sure it has. >> how? >> i want my grandchildren to be able to afford an education. are you suggesting that if someone has means that the them? >> help me with the question. ] >> i know people that are not able to pay the mortgage on
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their home, their car payment. i have personal problems with the national debt, but how has it affected you? if you have no experience with it, how can you help us? >> i think she means more of the recession problems. >> you should be the white house for the day and see what i see and read the mail that i agreed. i was in the lomax eme church. >> i just -- we missed the question. the question was, how has the national debt affected you personally? to clarify the bad economy. he did not get it. [laughter] >> sitting here as a journalist, i am struck by two
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things. lot of interpretation. there seems to be a very genuine moment with a man who i remember as very controlled and calm. really rising to wait a minute. that is an interesting line. you should be the white house. that is a very human moment. or bad these types of things? >> interestingly, i think it is a mitt romney problem today. if someone said you have a number of homes and your wife drives a couple of cadillacs and your money is offshore, how do you feel my pain? i think there will not be this kind of surprise on his face when this comes at a town hall meeting, but again, any kind of window we get, even into their thought process sees when they
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are confronted with an articulated left-field questions really does help us understand who they are. as bill clinton just goes over there and does that i lock on this woman. universe. feel my pain? [laughter] >> i do not think we wanted to go there. >> i am sure you want to follow that. >> i agree with mike -- we are moving in the right direction. to have the town hall where you unusual, but for candidates have public. there's a possibility to follow up. not necessarily the case when you have the panel together. >> the other aspect is the 90
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minute blocks of time. >> i would agree both of the formats, the town hall and the first of last debates, and the first and last debates, anything that facilitates greater interaction among candidates is significant and productive. the degree to which this facilitates it is a positive move. >> the journalism profession seems to be coming out on the short end. would you favor that format? >> i do not know. journalism is the world's second oldest profession. >> you think it might lack a touch of substance?
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>> i just think, mass media, television in particular, has intruded just too deeply into our society. remember i did a project for the newseum in nashville on the post for congress and the media. my dear departed friend of more than 35 years pat moynihan was one of the people on the program. he said, were used to talk to each other in the senate room on the senate floor, in conference committee. now we talk to each other through the weekend talk shows. television tries to create the idea that it is clean and politics is not.
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politics is what we need more of. we need more cloak rooms and less barfing on television from politicians. >> we would try to avoid that here. [laughter] >> i would invite those of you in the studio to the microphone if you have a question. but very quickly, given our theme, advice, tips to watch. what is the most important element, factor that a citizen should weigh when watching these debates? charlton, we'll start with you. one is the most important element for factor to watch for? then we will move to some
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questions. >> in being able to make a judgment about which candidate has a greater grasp on the information. the facts, what are they, are they truthful, are they honest, and to that end, citizens would be do well to listen carefully and listen for particular things that they can go out past the debates and verify more information about, in order to make that judgment about which of these candidates really has that grasp on the information that is relevant to the election. >> again, i think you want to look for the balance between the democratic leadership, which ties into information, but may go into an attitude and comportment as well. with the presidential election, we are picking not necessarily policies, but the person who will face the on noble
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challenges ahead. this is a moment where we can see them under pressure, side- by-side, making relative judgments about them, but also holding them against a standard of what we want in a leader. that is the opportunity, i think, we have. >> i would offer not just what to look for, but as a citizen, to be prepared in your own right. do some homework and issues so you do not have to take whatever they are saying as the truth. go in there as an informed watcher. secondly, without sounding like a shill for the league of women voters, make sure you are registered. if you are not going to be around, get an absentee ballot. the voter participation in this country is pretty pathetic. it matters. >> i am reminded of my telecommunications colleagues who made an appearance. she was asked, who won the debate? she said, the better question
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is what would you learn? i would ask you that question. did you learn aiding beyond the sound bites and speech module that you have heard on the campaign trail and on the ads? >> there is only one thing you can do. all you can say is, i wish i had said that. >> we will go to questions first from twitter and then the audience. given all of the 2012 moderators are white and represent media, has the commission on the presidential base in the format become obsolete? >> i do not think it has become obsolete. perhaps slow and behind the times. i think the absence of persons of color of the debate moderators, it is more of a
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signal of journalism in many ways, and the status of who is given credibility by their placement on those things. in that way, there is something to be said for the commission being behind and not paying attention to what that kind of representation might mean for viewers. >> we will go to a question in the audience and then back to twitter. >> prof. hogan, i believe, indicated you did not believe there would be the acceptance of a lincoln douglas-type of debate, but there are many of us that watch c-span for many hours, cnn, as proven by the audience here. don't you think it would be fascinating to say to each candidate, tell us what is on your mind, what are you thinking about, for about an hour? within we get better insight into the candidates to let them
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just talk? >> absolutely. would drop a small audience. we are talking about drawing these audiences of millions. whether the audience would sit there for three hours is something. i would certainly like to see more interactive exchange and we should push the formats in that direction. i do not recall who it was. somebody once said, we ought to put the two candidates in a room with a typewriter and see what comes out after four hours. there is certainly the audience for the series and deep, engaged discussion, -- but what is important about these debates, there are so many of these low interest people who are watching these debates. this is their first exposure to the campaign. that audience could not sit there for a three-hour debate on one issue. >> from #ncadebates12.
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when you ourselves, or as a voter watching, want to sort out the facts, error that one of the candidates made, the you recommend doing that during, actor? how should you recommend people making that personal fact check? >> grab another drink. >> certainly helps to lubricate the thought process. >> you could use factcheck.org but there are any number of them. i would wait until the debate is over. maybe sit there with a notebook. if people are hearing some in that is completely out of left field, they should make note of
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it. there is no dearth of fact checkers out there. , to make one point about this face-to-face debate. it is not about whether there would be an audience for it. because the presidential debate commission is controlled by the republican and democratic parties, i do not think the campaign would stay still for it. it is such a minefield. if you have two candidates in a controlled environment, even 90 minutes with a skilled moderator, allow them to go at each other, steering the debate, that is one thing. but if it is complete free-for- all, i think the campaign would never risk it. >> in the first debate, i learned afterward, nixon was one of the smartest politicians ever to be vice president, and of course later, president.
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and he was the most gracious. that did not come across in the debate. why was that? no one seems to have asked that question. was he over-awed by his wealth, his tan? that is what i want to know. why nixon did not bring that out as much as he did in the first one, in the next three. >> if i could, on the fact checking, one thing that i do that is helpful is to go to multiple fact checking organizations. go to several and get the consensus about what people have to say about the candidate's statements.
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>> we will go to a question from the studio. >> i have a question for professor mcilwain. i have been intrigued by your academic work, looking at how race influences the way candidates communicate with different audiences. for the first time, we have a white candidate and a non-when candidate in a presidential debate. what are the challenges that each of them are going to have to deal with in being a president of color, criticizing, attacking, defending himself against a white debate opponent, and vice versa, for romney. >> two items. for romney, it is to not look arrogant. you remember the scene from
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2008 where john mccain looks over to obama and point at him and says, that one. at referenced -- that referenced something of a racial moment, at least it was interpreted that way. mitt romney has to not come off that way. for obama, it is not making any kind of reference to race as some kind of excuse for anything. i think, to be safe, he has to basically not even broach the subject, certainly not on terms that would seem like his race is being used as some kind of excuse, which plays into people's already on the perceptions about him. >> at any point in the political process, one of the most difficult issues that
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america grapples with, and we do have for the first time an african-american president coming in with all of the advantages of incumbency. anything in particular that we need to watch, and just from the incumbent versus the challenger, that we can put into our notebook about how to watch? >> i do not know if this qualifies on how to watch, but one of the interesting things about televised debates his, with them came greater than opportunity for the incumbent to lose. the incumbent, until 1976, ford challenges carter. between then and now, 3 have been unseated-- not necessarily by the debate -- but they are unseated. in the 80 years preceding that, only two incumbents have lost, taft and hoover. it seems to be something about
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the exposure that makes it risky for the incumbent, even with the advantages of incumbency. >> from holley on twitter. an interesting question, given all we have talked about today. what is most important in the outcome of the debates? how the candidates appear, the non-verbal aspect of their performance, or how they interact with each other? i guess the third option is how they answer the question, but this is interesting. the lincoln douglas format. nonverbal or verbal interaction between the two more important? >> i do not know. [laughter] >> i would say nonverbal. there is a kind of conventional wisdom that by being on the same stage as president, the challenger is given enhanced
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credibility. i think these two gentlemen do not care for one another, seriously. not quite design, but we need to look for steering, and derision. you can be combative without being unpleasant. there are still people who expect challengers to respect the office of the presidency, even if they do not like the president. i think there is an ambiance factor. >> i would agree. it is a hard choice to make. the verbal and nonverbal will be important, particularly in this situation, when someone attacks, allegations have been launched by one or the other. inviting them to be in that space, where each other can account for that, tell me what
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you think, to be able to have that back-and-forth is, number one, important, but also telling to see what comes out of that direct confrontation, which rarely see. >> i that what is most important is the match between your verbal and nonverbal. whatever you say substantively, if you nonverbal plan does not match up, people will question that. there is also an interesting body of literature on politeness and aggression in the debates, and how you balance the two. we like our leaders to be assertive but not over the top and condescending, poland and not cowardice. the balance between the two has a fascinating issue. >> it will be particularly interesting this year because of the nasty political ads. people do not like that.
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i would not expect to see that in these debates, but i've been wrong before. >> i think katherine is right, in terms of the aggression and perception. i think that also has implications for race when we look of the dynamics between the two candidates as well. >> one of the challenges in the debates, one of the frustrating things for those watching, the question is asked and then the candidate gives a stump speech response. recently it discussion was held, putting the question as opposed to the topic on screen. so the viewers are watching, the question is presented, and it is much more clear by the time the question is given. is that bible? >> certainly it is viable, but impossible.
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because it is and the hands of the handlers. are the hands of the handlers in our national interest? i have yet to see that it is. what i hope we can do is, i hope we can put three people on stage, have a moderator, and let them go at each other, and keep everyone else out. >> i have a risky response, considering there are two journalists next to me. miter interpretation of why they give lines of their stump speech is because of something we talked about, the risk in these debates of making a misstatement. if those men not always inevitably the headlines, but if these debates are not about who lost an who won, i think they might be willing to take a few more risks. >> the question on twitter.
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is the expectations game being played every four years now have an impact on the way the candidates prepare? outside of what the questioner called the media bubble. >> with the exception of chris christie, a republican who said that it would be fabulous for mitt romney, a game changer -- this is like total lowball expectation going on out there. the president has been doing this for a long time, mitt romney has had 27 debates. i think the expectations game is hilarious actually. >> i think the voters have come to see through the expectations game and they know what is going on appeared to the question, i do not think it affects how the candidates prepare. it may affect how much they prepare for how much they want to hide.
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romney is pulling out the, you are addicted natural corridor, so that will make you great. the expectations, on not sure how they prepare for that is a big part of the media, of the spin doctors. >> i want to ask, should we get rid of all the expectations game and bring into play the exhaustion game? >> this because the number of debates? >> when i started out, new hampshire mattered. kennedy and nixon in wisconsin. hubert humphrey only got four districts, kennedy, 6. then they went to west virginia. kennedy when the catholic issue. that was seemingly does all from the primary appeared it
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came back in the general election. so there is simplicity to what we need, not more connivances brought on by the candidates, their organizations, but certainly not to the public of this country. >> we had a unique circumstance in 1992 where we had three participants. >> what was the third doing? >> you could tell me how well he had articulate, but ross perot had joined the candidate from the democratic and republican party. bush won, and bill clinton. we have third-party candidates
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now. they are not as prominent perhaps has ross perot or other third-party candidates. a question on twitter. what have we lost by excluding third-party candidates from the debates? >> we have lost a third party candidates. [laughter] >> obviously, some third party supporters. i mean this in i hope an objective way, but in these candidates, do they bring something to the debate? >> we lose risk, meaning, people willing to take a risk. these people are already behind, not likely a person to be chosen. when you think about the primary season's, often times those are more productive because you have people like ron paul, carol moseley-braun,
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willing to make statements covering a question that the other primary candidates will not make because there is to read it -- too much risk for them. one of the thing that the third party candidate to is move the discourse in ways that are not allowable when you have just the two candidates. >> before we even have presidential debates, our system is rigged against third-party candidates. the commission on presidential debates is a wholly owned subsidiary of the two party system. i would like to see us go back to a genuinely independent sponsor, like the lea women voters. the criteria they have for for dissipation of third-party candidates is prohibitively tough. >> first of all, i want to thank the panel. i think we have had informative discussion, a unfortunately, maybe more informative than we
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will see wednesday night. i hope that is not the case. [laughter] here is my question, and against what we have been talking about. we have this american myth of the president not able to tell a lie. here we are in 2012 almost beginning to accept fact checkers as something necessary. to me, that is a scary proposition. if something is not done, i just think it will be the course of doing business over time, and we will look at this 30 years later and say, yeah well, so what can we do in terms of journalistic scholarship to eliminate the need for fact checkers, or least the ability to point out that this is ridiculous? >> and beyond the debate from work, perhaps we need to respond. is there a chance to hold candidates more accountable from the start? >> no, why should we?
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why should we power ourselves about politicians? we have had enough of defacing politics in this country, let's end it. let's not have any more nixon or mccarthy-like attacks. let's go on pursuing, hopefully improving this god-given thing the founding fathers gave to us. >> i think one of the problems in militating against serious change is now the absolute flood of money that is pouring into the system, and it is not just the republicans and democrats and libertarians, it is all of the super pacs. as long as there are seemingly limitless funds to buy ads and indulge in the big lie and the district -- and you just repeat
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them as statements and flood the airwaves, then there really is no incentive for the candidates to tell the truth. i do not see where the club is to be them back into line. >> i am similarly not hopeful. it is primarily because of the candidates who know full well, if i come out and say something that is a lie or somewhere in that range, the washington post fact checker does something criticizing it, and if you read that, that is some substantive stuff going back and forth, very detailed way of vetting those, and who is going to listen? who is going to read? it is much more influential to say something, it is done in your mind, and then think about someone who would build into the details. >> i think one of the most interesting quotation to come
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none of the campaign was mitt romney's pollster who said we will not allow our campaign strategy to be dictated by fact checkers. that said it all. >> we will go to our last question here in the studio. >> we all remember the hard slog through the 25th and three quarters republican primary debate. it leads me to think, do we have too much? maybe we have too many debates that overlap and do not contribute much more to the actual discussion? i think back to the example in mexico. once the primary candidates are selected, the el toro board sets up a limited number of debates with predetermined issues. those are the debates that the candidates focus on, and that is done within a month of the final elections, and that is it.
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>> also the british model. call for an election, and then 45 to 60 days later having the election. so, too many? >> certainly too many primaries. 27? are you kidding? for general election debates, a lot of people watch these. i do not think there are too many of those, but the campaigns are too long. >> two words for journalism, critics, and others visa via our political system. the to the keywords are, hands off. >> i agree, four general election debates seems about right. it doesn't seem like a lot of time to spend 90 minutes on international and domestic
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issues. with respect to the primary debates, there were a lot of them but many people watched. they often dominated their spot in the dealership of cable networks. i would say the primary debate serving different function. there, we are trying to choose a party leader. we have lots of different personalities vying for that this year. the general election, we are choosing a national leader who can hopefully inspire bipartisan cooperation -- maybe we do not have any more -- but it is a different dynamic. >> we have come to the end of our time. let me know, on october 18 in richmond, va., our partners in ca will be holding a town hall to look at the first presidential town hall debate. if you are available, go to the nca web site to find out about that. and here at the newseum, we
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have exited the looks at the media coverage of the election. we have a program here with a medusa woodruff, gwen ifill, looking at the media coverage debate, getting the perspective from judy and gwen. we would encourage you to follow the debates, whether you think there are too many or too few a, and to use some of the advice here that we hope will go beyond the measure of simply just who won and who lost, and get to that substantive question that a number of our panelists have pointed out, in the first amendment's provision of free speech, freedom of religion, and the founders presupposed and informed electorate, and an
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electorate which is purchase of a tory, not sitting on the sidelines. again, echoing the panel here, i get involved. please join me in thanking our panel. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> when nations cheat in trade, and china has cheated, i will finally do something the president has not been willing to do, which is labeled them a currency manipulator. >> we brought more trade cases against china in one term than the previous administration did in two terms. by the way, we have been winning those cases. >> wednesday, president obama and mitt romney meet in their first presidential debate. watch and engage with c-span with our lives debate preview
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at 7:00 p.m. eastern. on c-span, both candidates on the screen for the entire debate. following, your reaction, calls, e-mails, and tweets. >> coming up on c-span, journalist howard kurtz looks at the role of social and media in the elections. texas senate's debate. later, a presidential debate preview. >> i have all the channels. author, book reviews, speeches, those types of things. if i know a bill is coming up on the floor of the house, i watch which channel i want to see, because i have them all. if there is a speech that i know
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you have covered or a book review, i am going to watch that. when i want to find out something, that is going to be one of the first places i look. i am obviously a public broadcasting fan. i watched those channels. out of a couple hundred channels, i probably have five or 10 that i go to. it will include all of the c- span channels. >> he watches c-span on direct tv. created in 1979, brought to you as a public service by your television provider. >> next, a look at the effect of social media on the 2012 elections. journalist howard kurtz was a guest on "washington journal." this is 45 minutes.
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editorauren ashburn is in chief and founder ofe "daily download," and howard kurtz, editor of "the daily beast." we want to talk about social media and the campaign. talk about how the media is looking at the presidential campaign. guest: i think they are covering the horse race at this point -- what do they need to do, each of them, to knock it out of the park? how important will this debate be going forward in setting expectations? howard and i disagree, but i think it is not that important. guest: not that important? guest: i told you. we have our routine down. i think people that are independent voters will not be tunisia in until closer to the election, and i like -- tuning in until closer to the election, and i likened it to sports. i'm not a baseball fan, but i
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have learned that the nationals won the division, and now i will start to pay attention. host: howard kurtz, is the media focusing exclusively on the horse race? guest: what i would use to describe the coverage is breathless. the coverage is quite breathless. i do not want to understate the importance that people are just turning to 2 mid-at mitt romney have three debates to change -- tunisia in. mitt romney have three debates to change the dynamic of this race. he might not have a better opportunity. the thing that we do every four
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years, those of us in the new business, is we treat this like a big boxing match where somebody knocks somebody else out, and that almost never happens. guest: there are a couple of examples. there is dan quayle, and lloyd bentsen saying i know jfk, you are no jfk. we watched al gore as he was signing and moaning for rob the debate with george w. bush, which cost him a lot -- sign in and moaning throughout the debate the george w. bush, which cost compared the -- cost him the debate. if there are not a lot of those 47% comments that president running mate -- did i say president running? -- mitt romney? mitt romney apologized. host: let's look at tom and said governor romney made yesterday about the debate. -- that governor romney made yesterday about the debate. [video clip] >> there is a lot of interest,
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people want to know who will win, who will score, and in my view it is not winning and losing, or the people themselves, the president and myself. it is about something bigger than that. these debates are about the pathway for word for america that we would choose, and the american people will have to make their choice. i look forward to these debates. i am delighted that we will have three debates. he will be a conversation with the american people that will span almost an entire month. host: mitt romney on the campaign trail yesterday. we have seen the candidates talk about this low expectation game. howard kurtz, caucus through what they have been saying. -- talk us through what they
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have been saying. guest: the president has been saying governor romney is a good debater, and i am ok, and the run the campaign has called president obama one of the best in history. all of this is so the romany people could say he did better than expected. everybody knows the candidates are doing this. i do not think anyone is terribly fooled. host: let's look at president obama sunday in nevada. [video clip] >> you might have heard that in a few days my opponent in this election and i are going to have a debate. i am looking forward to it. i know folks in the media are speculating on who will have the best designers. -- zingers. i do not know about that.
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who is going to put the most points on the board -- governor romney is a good debater. i am just ok. but, but what -- what i am most concerned about is having a serious discussion about what we need to do to keep the country growing and restore security for hard-working americans. that is what people will be listening for. that is the debate that you deserve. host: president obama on sunday. lauren ashburn, what is the media put the job as the candidates make these low- expectation remarks -- what is the job of social media and journalism in communicating that to the american people? guest: you heard him say people will be looking for zingers. that is true. if you around twitter, and you can watch out people like to
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send those out, and add their own comments. twitter is a form of communication where you can be more snarky than you can be in print or on line. i think the zingers will play a factor inside the beltway. guest: i think it will be a factor in all 50 states. i'm sure there will be a lot of good exchanges, and there will be exchanges of views on medicare, the economy, tax cuts, the deficit, all of that -- what will be replayed on line, on cable television, on the broadcast networks, are a couple of 20-second exchanges. there tend to be these moments of body language. the mitt romney camp, somebody said they would be projecting personal warmth. a lot of this is not just
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looking at the transcript, but how people react to them as potential visitors in their living room for the next four years. host: you can join the conversation. here are the numbers to call -- let's hear from katharine in ohio. caller: i have two questions. i want answers from romney, not rhetoric. you can take all the time you need and answer questions. the republicans have been
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looking for a voter fraud, and now we have found it, it is in your camp, and what are you, republicans, going to do about it? you are so hot to put democrats under the boss. let's see if you will throw your own people under the bust. i understand that for each count of voter fraud, they would receive three-to-five years in prison, and i want it done. i want her penalized to the max. i'm from hamilton county, cincinnati. thank you. host: lauren ashburn. guest: you raise an important point. the insert piece of this -- mitt romney, even conservatives say this, like david brooks, the "new york times" columnist, what people are looking for our definitive answers to how he will fix the economy. use of paul ryan over the weekend talking about -- you saw paul ryan over the weekend
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talking about how he does not have time to explain the numbers in his budget. people want that explanation and are creeping back from the governor. guest: given the constraints of the debate format, they will not give chapter and verse from the town and its parent -- from the candidates. this is more important for mitt romney. he benefits as a challenger from standing on the same stage as the incumbent president of the united states, but there is a greater burden to convince the wavering voters, the 12 or 14 people that i've not made up their minds in this election. host: post-debate spin, howard kurtz, how important is that, and how social media plays a more important role? guest: the post-debate spin, i think it is critical, as people watched the debate, but they can make up their own mind, but that is an hour and half. what you get for the next
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several days or a week are the clips that are replayed, the chair by the commentators. you mentioned the al gore eye- rolling that was not talked about the night it happened. it was talked about after examining the tape. john kerry, he won the first two debates against george w. bush. in the third debate team a day reference to -- in the third debate he did well, but made a reference to vice-president dick cheney's daughter being a
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lesbian, and the republicans pushed back. guest: for those and not been in a debate, this is what happened. journalists are in a room, writing their stories, and then they have a path to go into the spin room. you get to talk to them. the journalists take that with a grain of salt. they are expecting the spin. they expect them to tell you how great they did. an important piece of this comes from media analysis where you take a step back and look at it. look at how the media -- were they spun? guest: i will be in the spin room and i expect to be a little dizzy.
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caller: i have to say that i think there is a liberal bias in the media and it is so clear and so obvious. not just based on studies and conservative groups. look at the coverage over libya. our embassy was burning overseas. four diplomats were killed. the news coverage was about mitt romney's gaffes. not about the changing story. if george bush was president, i think this would be a major scandal. yet it has been completely under played by the mainstream media. every romney gaffe is amplified and the media obsesses over mistakes that romney makes. mitt romney is not running the best campaign. that is pretty obvious. i think of mitt romney had said "the bump in the road," then it would be a week-long scandal.
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guest: we both tried to hold the media accountable. of course there is a liberal bias in the media. i agree with the caller that it is obvious. look at chris wallace and his interview on fox would paul ryan. he was very hard on paul ryan and held him accountable. milk of the widow - -neal cavuto asked some tough questions of mitt romney. i feel their people out there that are trying not to let their bias show. guest: "the 47%" comment, that
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was a setback for him that still resonates today. at the same time, it does seem that because romney is a challenger, there's been a lot more scrutiny of romney and his missteps then the president and libya and that is a good example of that.
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i think it is appropriate for a journalist to be aggressive in covering mitt romney. host: let's listen to paul ryan on fox news sunday talking about expectations of governor romney's debate performance. [video clip] >> i did not think one event will make her break this campaign. president obama is a very gifted speaker. the man has been on the national stage for many years. he has done these debates before. >> 23 debates in the primary.
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>> people will see who is mitt romney. host: that this paul ryan on "fox news sunday." chris christie raised expectations. how much of this is a planned strategy? how does the media handle the layout that has been prepared as the go into tomorrow night? guest: he wandered off the script. people forget that during the primaries, mitt romney was very tough. he dispatched newt gingrich and rick santorum. it is harder when you're standing up there one by one. that was paul ryan saying let's lower the bar so if romney does reasonably well, people will
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say, what a surprise. host: james from michigan. caller: the media bias depends which channel you watch. fox news is biased to the conservative point of view. i find it hard to believe that no one polls high enough to get into a debate with these other people, barack obama and mitt romney. they are so will finance it keeps everybody else out of it. i think we need another point of view. look at the facts. they seemed so much alike. guest: i could not agree more.
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we are so entrenched in the two- party system. ross perot did not get very far. guest: he got 19% of the votes. guest: now he would have to do 10 times to keep up with the other candidates. guest: the caller said you can see the media bias because fox news leans. you see that as a stand in for almost all of the media. you have magazines, websites. those cable networks -- many of the people who were there are pushing an ideological agenda have become a shorthand for immediate as a whole. there are reporters that try to beat down the middle. i work at cnn and i think cnn tries to work down the middle. host: what is the role of social media and how is that changing this campaign season?
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guest: facebook has opened a washington, d.c., office, and very aggressive in getting people to vote. they have done in partnership with cnn. they are trying to get people to share information. the candidates have a robust presence on facebook. president obama has close to 20 million likes. governor romney has close to seven million. if friends are sharing political information to others friends, those friends are more likely to lean toward that candidate.
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they want -- they trust their friends. that goes back to the media bias. guest: i am on twitter all the time. it breaks the stranglehold. anybody can be a broadcaster. anybody can reach the other people if they can amass a following. you account for that and people may follow whose views they agree. guest: or they may say, i am defriending this person because i cannot stand what they are saying.
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they are attracting a younger vote. the obama campaign is buying ads on the video games. then on the nfl madden video game. look at the game. it says, "vote." "go to this site to register to vote." president obama started that social media trend. host: one of our guests, lauren ashburn, recently had a piece about the use of younger websites and games to target audiences. she writes --
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guest: if you do not know about social media and the word "pinterest" is foreign to you, there has been a video explanation of these sites. we have on our side 1-minute videos that tell you all you need to know about any one of the sites. we did about 30 or 40 of them. there are a tutorial for people who do not get it that want to get it. it is an important piece of information.
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guest: it is the equivalent of going on 'the view." they cannot just post something on facebook. they have to go find voters who did not watch cnn are major consumers of political news. you see things light madden nfl games. host: good morning, mickey. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. registered democrat for a long time. on taking mitt romney's side this one. i'm kind of scared if obama gets in for another quite sure years. i do not want socialism.
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i am out of work since january. i got laid off by a democrat. $40,000 a plate for democrats to support obama. why do they blame the rich people? they have money, too. right now i'm supporting mitt romney. host: let's get a response. guest: i am sorry that you lost your job. what is says is our economy is not on track. president obama knows that and his message is, "give me four more years."
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the message from mitt romney is, "get out of here. you have had enough time." that will be a crucial issue. people are looking for those messages. guest: it tends to get lost. not blaming that on the financial mess. of course it will affect him and his political outlook and his vote if he has felt the sting of this recession and getting laid off. a lot of people have been out of work for a long time. some of the jobs may not be coming back. anybody from the romney camp may be looking for this caller. guest: lois romano was talking about the people that lost jobs mostly were white men.
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i think those are the votes that are in jeopardy. republicans have traditionally gone towards republicans anyway. he has the ability to capture your vote. host: lauren ashburn is the editor in chief of "daily download." howard kurtz is an adviser to the "daily download." guest: brand confusion. host: jimmy on our republican line.
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caller: where is the media on gas prices, food prices? the liberal media is not doing us any justice. what if this was bush or 57 states? host: we're hearing this liberal media claim. guest: i don't think there's been a shortage of reporting on the ailing state of the economy. when somebody says "thank god for fox news," they have a point of view that we're easier on barack obama then we work and
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george bush. -- than we were on george w. bush. we talked about gas prices. the problem is the housing prices have plummeted and have not come back. the jobs have lost. this recovery cannot gain steam. i don't think this is an under reported story. guest: i see very few stories about gas prices and that impacts everyday lives. here it is. i was a managing editor for 10 years at "usa today." i think that the media could do a better job of covering that story and other stories like it that have an impact on pocketbooks. host: doug from pennsylvania,
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welcome. caller: at the end of the day, in terms of moving forward, could you please tell me what i'm talking about? tell me what the pundits and politicians are saying, what they mean when they say these things? how many times did paul ryan say, "at the end of the day"? maybe you should take people literally when they say "at the end of the day." "at the end of the day i take off my clothing and go to bed.'
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could you buy these people a thesaurus? guest: i happened to hate that phrase. i would support a law to banish it from the airwaves. newt gingrich always says "frankly this" and "frankly that." guest: you can't point. guest: it is inside-the-beltway speak. you are thinking about what you're going to say. "i have this point i have to hit." guest: "let me be clear." "make no mistake."
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host: let's look at the latest presidential poll. president obama, 50%. mitt romney, 47%. how influential is it in the media chamber? guest: the campaigns are obsessing on the polls. the import numbers of the numbers in eight or nine key states. here's my beef about the coverage. we want to know who will win. it seeps into all the coverage when one candidate is down. everything he says is seen as a semi desperate attempt to close the gap. i think the coverage has become so poll-driven.
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it would be different if barack obama were down by five points. guest: i did not think we do a good job of getting into the middle of the country and talking to those folks. you're sitting in a studio. a poll comes across and now you have something that's right in front of you that you can talk about. because of budget cuts, you are not seeing the expense -- people are not spending the money to get people talking to people. guest: there are a relative handful of people that still go knocking on doors.
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you always learn something when you talk to voters. i think there should be more of that. guest: you are agreeing with me. host: let's hear from an independent caller, shirley. caller: it is nice to talk with you. i watch cnn and fox. one thing none have reported -- i got it on the internet. i am 80 years old. i was born during the wpa. i know -- i think our money has been spent foolishly in the white house. they have put a clamp on a story that came now.
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remember when mr. obama said stay out of mexico on spring break? his daughter took a dozen friends and 25 secret servicemen to mexico. the cost was enormous. i think that should be reported. republican or democrat, i do not think there force one should go so often on campaigning. guest: i think you have a valid point about the overspending in washington. i think a lot of people know that. i do not think that we do a good job there either. one of the pieces that we did yesterday was talking about how many are not covering house races.
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that's where you have an opportunity to vote the bums out. the democrats need 25 seats, if not more, to have a majority and the house. that story is not being reported. guest: it is easy to plot an example about how much air force one is being used or were the president's family is vacationing. the white house is overspending. every dollar has to be approved by congress. both parties are complicit in that and have been unable to
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reach a budget deal that would take a cut in spending and perhaps raise revenue. guest: that will be evident in january. everybody is so focused on the horse race. we need to find this stuff. host: let's hear from shirley. caller: i studied politics all the time. ever since i saw the first tv. i study everything about who they are connected with. i'm not -- i am voting for democrats this time. host: let's go to marcia. caller: look at who they picked to be the moderator. david gregory was on. now we'll have -- the republicans run against a headwind every time.
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c-span spent three days about the truth of what romney said about people paying income tax. nothing about the obama campaign saying they will write off the blue-collar worker or people clinging to their guns and religion. they have not spoken about the video, a terrorist attack. our heroes died. valerie jarrett is on vacation. she had more protection than they did. issuelet's look at the about moderators.
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host: we can see who the other moderators are. how much of a role of these moderators playing? guest: they are very important. they are taking the approach when you want to be a star of the show. i talk to jim lehrer about this in number of times. bob schieffer, both sides trust him. what they will try to do is elicit information from the candidates and that the opponents' go at it. guest: i agree. i think jim lehrer who has done this for years and years -- people keep calling him back into that.
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i think that journalists are getting a bum rap. you have to look at these individuals on their overall record. guest: it is hard to critique how the moderators did. but to say you think they are not going to be fair, think that is a bum rap. caller: how are you doing?
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thank you for the hard work that you do. it is getting better as we go. i want to make a comment. there was a statement earlier about a guy who lost his job. half of america lost their jobs. if you do not vote, you don't have a chance to cast your opinion. you want representatives to represent you. you cannot work for something and then give up on that. america was not built on that. i'm cool with everything. i lost my job also. i was also paying taxes. that did not discourage me. america, we're built tougher than that.
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we have to work on the real meat and potatoes of the issue. guest: i think that what you're raising is an important part -- we need to vote in this country. the numbers are staggering of people who do not vote or registered to vote. there are websites that make it easy. there is absentee voting. that is an issue that is not covered enough. it is more important than ever to vote. i am shocked that people do not cover media and politics or they do not follow it.
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i am on it 24/7. turn off the sports and start participating in the conversation, even if it doesn't matter that much to you because there are a lot of people without jobs. host: what role does the media play in motivating people? how is the media covering the apathy? guest: i were at the we have projected the image that politics is a game and it is all about slam-dunk the other guy. not just for president but for senator and governor. it does matter what a president can do about the economy. but appointing supreme court justices and regulatory policies. i wonder if the cynicism has
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seeped down to a lot of people. when people do not vote, it is kind of a statement that nothing is going to change. that it doesn't matter whether they vote or not. guest: as anthony said, america was built on people that get up and start again and overcome anniversary and keep fighting and keep trying to make changes. by giving that up is just not productive. host: lauren ashburn, thank you so much. howard kurtz, host of "reliable sources," thank you as well. coming up next, s.a.t. scores. we'll talk about that.
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>> tomorrow, a discussion on the role of young book -- young voters in the presidential election. then we hear from robert ericksokson. later, an examination of the reasons why people vote. >> see the first presidential debate marmite live on c-span, c-span radio, and online at c- span.org. coming up next, tonight's texas- senate debate.
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later, a preview of the presidential debate. republican cruz debates sadler. this debate comes to us from dallas. this is just under an hour. >> thank you for joining us. it is a race to decide who will represent texans in the u.s.
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senate. we hope by the end of the night tonight, you will have a better idea of who you want to vote for. we will be following your comments on twitter. make your comment. we will be able to follow along with you. look for additional information on twitter, as well. you will notice this is a very different debate. we are throwing out the rules. the candidates will face each other answering the tough questions. >> thank you very much. good evening.
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>> good to be with you. >> thank you for being with us tonight. >> should be fun. >> we are at it again. >> i would like to start tonight by framing with this race is right now for november with questions for each of you. we start with mr. sadler. you have an uphill battle. raising money has been hard. the democratic party has been behind you for the primary against a totally unknown candidate. democrats in texas are not totally behind you. why should independent or moderate republican voters consider you? >> do not confuse the texas democratic party with the national democratic party. the texas democratic party is very strongly behind me. it has been pretty amazing.
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the national party made its decision a year ago, a long time ago. i would not read too much into that aspect of it. the texan democratic party is strongly behind me. republicans and independents should support me because of my bipartisan record. i have a record of accomplishment. i work on education bills and a tax cut. that was done with the republican governor, is split between republicans and democrats in the house and senate. it was a bipartisan effort. we got it done for texas. i have been on the road. i really do not know. >> mr. sadler, a democrat has not won a statewide office in texas since 1994. do you consider this an uphill battle? >> for an open senate seat, it is always a battle, and should be, and needs to be, regardless of the party. i understand we have not elected a democrat in a long time. >> let's go to mr. cruz. he said the day after you beat lt. governor dewhurst, he said he would run scared for the general election. but you have agreed to this and
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one other televised debate. you criticized governor dewhurst for having almost 40 candidate forms up to the primary, but are you playing it safe and coasting? >> we have been crisscrossing the state of texas. we have been all over the state, literally hundreds of ihop's and vfw halls and denny's talking with voters in every part of the state. that is what we are doing between now and election day. i'm very glad to be here in this debate tonight. i am looking forward to another
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debate in a couple of weeks. i think it is important to present the very clear force the election faces. >> 1.4 million republicans in the primary -- you put a lot of energy into that. why shouldn't they have the same energy and exposure side-by- side with you and mr. sadler as before the primary? >> we are debating here today. we will debate in a couple of weeks. in the meantime, i am on the road in a different city between just about every day between now and election day. >> but why can not we have another debate? why not the one in houston? what are you afraid of? >> i am focusing on supporting our campaign. that is what we're doing. i'm listening to the voters of texas. >> you can build the support in a debate. >> we agreed to this one. look -- i understand you are working very hard to get media coverage. it is not our obligation to help you in that. you can go convey your message to texas voters. i am conveying mine. >> it is your obligation to face the voters of texas. >> i am doing that. >> as you said, state by tv, is the critical point.
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you have had the opportunity. even for the tea party debate, which she would not do. why what he faced me now? >> we are sitting here right now. you can launch every attack you want to right now, on television. an unscripted, moderated format -- this is unscripted. >> you will not face me six times. >> maybe you could actually respond. you are facing right now. attack me however you like. >> let's move forward and we will see if there are more debates later on. maybe you two can negotiate that. if you cut government benefits -- a secretly recorded video of mitt romney at a private fund-
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raiser was made public -- let's take a look. >> 47% of the people -- who will vote for the president a matter what. who believe the government has responsibility to care for them. who believe they are entitled to health care and food and housing, you name it. that is an entitlement. >> texas -- in 2010, 38.5% of texans filing a return paid no income tax. there is no data on how many texans get government assistance, but the census bureau found 24% get social security. 14% had retirement income. 5% disability benefits, and 14% receive food stamps. mr. cruz, do you believe that government has a responsibility
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to care for them? >> of course not. i agree with mitt romney when he says his comments were poorly phrased. keefe said they were in elegantly stated. i think there is a difference. part of the philosophy of president obama is trying to get as many americans as possible dependent on government so that the democrats can stay in power in perpetuity. the reason i think that is failing is, even those americans, if you break down that 47%, there is a significant chunk of people, receiving social security, who have paid into it their entire life. that is very different from being dependent on welfare. that is a critical safety net our society has counted on that
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we need to insure remain strong for generations to come. even those who are receiving welfare right now, most americans do not want to stay dependent on government. they want to work for the american dream. they want to work to provide for themselves and their families. i think that is why the obama administration's objective is essentially using bread and circuses to make as many people as possible dependent on government, to keep voting democratic, is not succeeding. americans want to stand on their own feet. >> that is the craziest thing i ever heard of my life. you are accusing the president of united states of using a government program to manipulate people do not get a job, to be dependent on the government for services? >> i'm impressed. we are a few minutes and -- >> that is crazy. >> let me finish. >> i am impressed. we are a few minutes in and you have now three times called me crazy on observing that the president has expanded government dependency. >> you are saying he is manipulating american so they will vote democratic. >> let's talk about the issue of benefits.
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in 1960, 20% -- of federal spending went to individual payments. this year, 65% of federal spending goes to individual payments. i would suggest we do have a problem with government -- >> we had a downturn in the economy. we have hard times, people looking for work and not able to find jobs. >> 65% of federal spending going to individual payments. it may not sound good, but we have created a welfare state. >> to blame it all on president obama is even worse. to declare the president of the
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united states is manipulating so people will stay and vote democrat? i think that is the most ridiculous thing i have ever heard. such a cynical view of the presidency and of government that cannot possibly reflect -- >> your response? >> i think a far better approach than a dependency is removing the barrier the federal government puts in place to small businesses and allowing entrepreneurs and small businesses to drive. >> what barriers? >> i am very happy to discuss the various. >> i wish she would. >> let him finish and make his point, then you can respond. >> what texans are looking for, and what is inherent in the east coast of texas, is that we are not looking for handouts. we're looking for the chance to the entrepreneur is, to work to achieve. i think there have been a host of regulatory policies under barack obama that has killed jobs, ranging from obamacare to dodd-frank, to the abuse and enforcement of environmental laws, the ban on the xl pipeline, the enforcement of labor laws -- those policies have killed thousands and
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thousands of jobs and collectively, we are making it incredibly difficult for small businesses to thrive, much less survive. >> so if you have 65% of spending going to individual payments, what would you do to try to reduce that? >> in order to create more jobs, we have to control the national debt. i think that is what we have to do. i have said it from the beginning. i have given a plan to try to deal with it. this idea that somehow mr. cruz is lecturing us on standing on our own feet, i find incredible. he spent most of your adult life working for the government. you have not created jobs. you have not on your own business. i have.
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my wife and i own a retail store. we did not have the federal government with their boots on our neck. when george bush was president, we lost 700,000 jobs per month. all these programs were in place at the time. the only addition is the health care act, which has not been fully implemented. i think that you have a selective memory of where we are in this country and how we got to where we currently are. >> i must say, mr. sadler may well be the only person, the only small business owner, former small-business owner in the state who does not think the regulatory and tax burden under this administration has made it harder to create jobs. i will tell you, crisscrossing the state, it does not matter, east texas, west texas, austin, dallas, houston, small-business owners say their life has
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become much harder with the regulatory uncertainty and burdens. two-thirds of all new jobs come from small-business. >> i am not hearing that from small business. you keep saying that, but i do not hear it. >> in response to the romney video, an obama video surfaced in which he discusses market forces and competition, but also the redistribution of wealth. let's take a look. >> it is figuring out how we
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structure government systems that pool resources and facilitate some redistribution, because i actually believe in redistribution, at least a certain level to make sure everybody has got a shot. >> mr. sadler, do you agree with this notion of redistributing wealth from one side of americans to another site? >> i do not agree with that at all. i do not know the context, the full context of what he is saying, but that was 15 years ago. >> 14. >> 14 years ago. i do not follow that philosophy. i do not see any evidence, in spite of mr. cruz's claims, of him manipulating the public, as he suggests. >> mr. cruz, please respond -- do you believe he is saying he does not believe in redistribution? >> of course president obama believes in wealth distribution. one of the things mr. sadler has been clear is that he supports president obama. this president has engaged in reckless fiscal policies. we have seen a national debt under president obama grow from $10 trillion to over $16 trillion. it is larger than our gross domestic product.
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we are galloping down the road to where greece and italy and much of europe find themselves. i cannot tell you how many texans have expressed to me one on one their concerns that we're jeopardize in the future up for our kids and grandkids if we do not get out of control federal spending under control. >> the numbers are wrong to begin with. we act redoubled our national debt under george w. bush. when you were working for him, i believe. the war in iraq and afghanistan and bush tax cuts -- we doubled our spending under george bush. we continue to add during the obama years, but had to deal with the iraq and afghanistan wars and the bush tax cuts that were never paid for. the support president obama as our commander in chief? do you believe he is a united states citizen? do you accept the fact that he calls himself a christian? >> that was three questions. i will say, of course barack obama is our commander in chief. i wish he were a stronger commander in chief.
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>> to you believe in the? >> let him finish, please. you posed the question. >> i wish he were a stronger commander in chief. in recent weeks, we saw the tragedy of the assassination of -- >> let him finish. >> ok. >> they are simple questions. >> i understand you would like to put me on the cross examination stage. if you would like a -- >> i'll give you about 20 seconds, then we will move on. >> i wish she were a stronger commander in chief. in the last few weeks, we saw our ambassador to libya assassinated in an organized action by al qaeda on september 11. his response was to affectively apologize and blame it on an obscure internet video instead of standing up to terrorists. >> are you going to answer my question, or just lecture? >> i do not agree with what you said and how you described it at all. >> he asked me a question back. >> we will move on to that in a moment. right now, i want to get back to the original question -- a fiscal matter regarding taxes and the redistribution of wealth. >> mr. sadler, you have indicated support in letting the bush tax cuts at all income
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levels expire, a position which is beyond what the president supports. >> that is not what i said. what i said was, we will have to look at all of these tax cuts. in light of our national debt, we have to balance our budget, cut spending where we can, we will hope our economy continues to do well, but we will have to look at various sources to retire in national debt of $16 trillion. at the appropriate time, we have to look at every one of the bush tax cuts and figure out how they affect the economy, how to generate revenue we can dedicate to pin down national debt. that is what it will require there are obviously things we will not do. i do not think he will do the child care deduction or change the estate tax law, but i think there are levels of income and rates we have to look at. >> the question was, do you support letting all the bush tax cuts expire? i want to play video from the houston pbs forum when you are asked, do you want to do away with bush tax cuts? >> the very thing we will have to do -- we will have to let the bush tax cuts go. in order to pay down the national debt. at the end of the day, if you look at the budget, a look at
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the budget you get down to military and defense spending or the bush tax cuts. >> are you talking about the bush tax cuts on all income levels? >> there is no qualification in that statement. what i said, and i still stand by, there are three things that doubled on national debt -- the bush tax cuts, -- >> the question is, do you want to expire them in total? there was no qualification. >> i am getting there. i think, and i still say, that we have to look at every single one of them and determine if we can use some of that money to pay down our national debt. we can lie to the american people or tell the truth. the truth is that those tax cuts, if we let them expire, will increase our national debt by almost one-half. >> what is your position, mr. cruz? >> i would not allow the bush tax cuts to expire. i'm curious. i will commend mr. sadler. he is running a campaign with a great deal of courage because he is running an unapologetically liberal campaign and is running in support of raising taxes, a
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host of liberal views. i commend him for his candor in that. i do not think those are the values of most texans. i am curious, mr. sadler, which texans would you raise taxes on, and which texans would do not raise taxes on? >> do you consider it liberal to say we have to balance the budget and pay down national debt. do you think is liberal to cut spending? i think is liberal to cut taxes when you are operating a deficit, because you are spending money. >> i do not think your labels mean a lot. what i have said from the beginning -- the centerpiece of our problems is the national debt. we simply have to look at this. whether we do it this year because of the way our economy is or next year, $2.3 trillion. >> i want you to respond to this.
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>> i'm glad there is a clear contrast between the two of us. i do not believe we should raise taxes. i do not think the problem is that americans are not taxed enough.
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mr. sadler has been very candid that he would consider raising taxes on every single tax and who pays income tax is. >> that is not fair. >> if you would consider allowing all of the bush tax cuts to expire, that would raise taxes on every single tax and who pays income tax. are the texans to pay income taxes we would not raise taxes on? you did not have an answer. >> you will not put words in my mouth. i would say, the first place, we have to balance the budget, cut spending, and raise revenue to reduce the national debt. you have never given any plan to reduce the national debt. anything you even described. talk about the deficit, our current budget, but you never say how you will eliminate $16
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billion of the national debt. even tom coburn, one of your heroes, from oklahoma, says we have to raise revenue. we have to cut spending. we have to balance our budget. that is not liberal, that is not conservative, it is just the truth. >> i will make a point that in that entire answer, mr. sadler did not disagree with me once that there is not a single texan who currently pays income tax that he is willing to rule out raising taxes on. i've asked to three times that question, and you have yet to give an answer. >> hold on, what about the question of revenue? he mentioned coburn -- there was a proposal of three to one tax cuts to revenues. >> i think the problem we have
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right now is that federal spending is out of control. the problem is not the taxes are too low. historically, tax revenues have been roughly 18% of gdp. government expenditures have been roughly 20% of gdp. with barack obama as president, those have risen to nearly 25% of gdp. that is a structural shift in the size of a government. i think the solution is to bring it back. i think that is especially true when the economy is teetering on the brink of recession. any economist worth his salt would tell you that the worst thing to do when the economy is coming out of recession and potentially going into another recession is to jack up taxes on job creators, small businesses, and yet that is precisely what my opponent is proposing? >> that is absolutely not true. we have to look at them at some point of time. you do not do this in a vacuum and not just do it in the last days of a political campaign. it is interesting to me -- if you acknowledge all of governments and just look at the $2.30 trillion -- it would
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still take eight years to pay down our national debt. yet you not commit to a single program to pay down national debt. you keep saying the same stuff that we have to cut spending. if you cut everything, abolish every government department, it would take us eight years to pay down. >> we will move on to foreign policy issues. >> with respect, the premise of your statement is not accurate. i have campaigned for two years on very specific strategies to reduce the spending in government. we have to get the spending under control. your statement is not accurate. >> let me go back to the policy questions, foreign policy
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question about the situation recently with the north africa. american taxpayers pay billions of dollars -- it was a big issue when we saw the scenes will see in a moment in egypt and the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. a radical islamist group attacked the u.s. embassy and tore down the american flag. in the same day, in libya, an assault on the consulate resulted in the death of the american ambassador christopher stevens and three others. these images echo the worst -- the recall those moments in 1979 with the taking of american hostages at the embassy in iran. u.s. taxpayers gave an enormous $1.6 billion to egypt, which is now run by a former member of the muslim brotherhood. should the u.s. give up foreign aid to these nations, mr.
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sadler? >> no. not now, we have a fledgling government being formed a. with egypt withholding funds, the editorial board agreed is time for us to stop the old on that aid. it is in our best interests to stay involved. if we do not stay involved, russia, china, and other countries with in this world will i do not think to cut off the aid. >> mr. cruz? >> this is another area of clear disagreement. we should not be funding those who are contrary to our interest. the only justification for continuing that aid or any portion of it is it to protect national security interests of the united states. we should use that aid as extensive leverage to protect national security interest. we should not be writing a blank check. look at the nation of egypt, the muslim brotherhood in power, i think that is an extraordinarily dangerous situation for us to be sending over $1 billion to them, much of it in military aid. it is a precarious situation. >> mr. sadler? do you agree with that? >> if he severed ties with egypt, you guarantee that people who are our enemies will be involved. i think it is a dangerous strategy mr. cruz is suggesting, and it violates every foreign policy we have had in recent memory.
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the fact is, the way we will help these countries go forward -- if we do not, our enemies will. i would much rather us be involved. >> there is one principle clear from time immemorial -- tyrants cannot respect weakness. the tragic hostage situation in iran -- this president has engaged in the wrong pattern of coddling those hostile to the united states. recently, the president was too busy to meet with prime minister of israel benjamin netanyahu but could still appear on letterman. that that could take priority over meeting a valuable ally. >> do you still consider egypt and ally? >> i hope so. but i do not think we should write a blank check.
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i think we should be using the aid as a lever point to ensure they are an ally. >> that is exactly what our foreign policy is. that is what our representatives and president have been doing. i do not know what world you are living in, but this foreign- policy has been in place for many presidents. we that support these countries and remain friendly with them, or you guarantee they go to the other side. i think it is extraordinarily reckless and dangerous -- not what you are suggesting, a position of weakness. >> let me ask you a question about a strong president. do you agree with president obama in his refusal to meet with prime minister netanyahu and his decision to go on "the view" instead. >> i think he should always meet with heads of government. i feel the government of the state of texas should meet with the president, regardless of their affiliation. that is a sign of respect. >> on that we have agreement. both of us think it was wrong for president obama to snub the
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prime minister of israel. >> i do not know what his schedule is. you characterized -- rhetoric about snubbing, been weak, i do not know what the situation was for the president's office, his schedule, what the israeli prime minister's schedule was. if it is possible, you should always meet with foreign heads of government you so what scheduling conference the think would be sufficient? he declined requests from the prime minister to meet when the prime minister was in new york. my understanding is that during that same week he went on david letterman and "the view." >> at the same time? you are using that as an excuse? >> we do not even know. you do not even know. you slander our president and do not even know his schedule.
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>> i am describing his conduct. >> i do not know david letterman's personal schedule or the president's, but we have come to the bottom of a half- hour. much more in the next 30 minutes. >> thank you. a spirited, sometimes fiery debate between our two than senate candidates. we appreciate them being here and appreciate hearing from you. you have been following on through the first half. use the hashtag #belodebate. what so far about the answers? what issues matter to you? have they answered your questions? let's talk about what you have to say, when we come back. more cruz versus sadler, right after this.
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>> the senate debate will continue in a couple of minutes. >> welcome back to, everyone, to ted cruz versus sadler. a lot of twittering going on, as the covered wide range of topics. let's get to some of them right here on the board. from david holmes -- i like this format. why won't you agree to more debates, cruz? up next, coming from joshua, sadler is already looking desperate, he may want to rethink his insistence on six debates. from houston news, remove the moderators and that these two go at it. it may be too late for that. moderators are firmly in place during their best as they hash out issues. let's go to health care and immigration. back to you. >> we are going to talk about health care right now, a huge topic in texas and around the nation. mr. cruz, we'll start with you. you have made your position on the affordable care act commonly known by -- as obamacare. >> the first bill i intend to introduce is a bill to repeal
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every syllable of every word of obamacare. i intend to lead the fight to get that done. there is enormous pressure to compromise -- we should repeal it in its entirety. >> under the health care so far -- 357,000 texans under 26 have coverage by joining their parents' insurance plans. 2.2 million seniors received free preventive care last year. texans on medicare have saved $223 million on drug prescription drugs. do you support taking away all these benefits that are very popular with texans? he went to take them away by trying to repeal this law? >> i believe we should repeal this law for two reasons. number one, it is designed to move us inexorably towards single-payer government-provided health care. if you look every nation on earth where socialized medicine is implemented, the result has
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been poor quality, waiting times, and rationing, putting government bureaucrats between patients and their doctors. the second reason it should be repealed as that i think obamacare was rammed through in a brazen display of arrogance. it was clear it was contrary to the strong views of the majority of people. it is the only major piece of social legislation of modern times to be passed on a strictly partisan vote, only by democrats, despite the fact that brokers in virginia had elected a republican. in massachusetts, the scott brown race was effectively a referendum on obamacare. and yet this president and nancy pelosi and harry reid rammed it through. >> the question -- if you were elected, do you want these benefits that hundreds of thousands of texans now have -- do you want them taken away? >> that is not exactly right. i support as a dividend health care reform. >> the lot of the land is in the books. do you want to have it taken away? >> you cannot talk about half
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without the other half. the other half -- i think health care reform should follow if you principals. number one, it should expand competition in the marketplace. number two, it should empower patients and disempower government bureaucrats. let me give you three specific reforms -- number one, allow people to purchase health insurance across state lines. that would create a true 50- state national marketplace for health insurance. for example, talking about children under 26 being on the apparent policy. if we get a true national marketplace for of insurance, those parents who wanted to purchase that coverage to purchase set. we would not need the government mandating @. >> if i understand this correctly, you want to repeal obamacare. these benefits would go away. do you believe that or not? >> this is a clear indication
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-- honestly, the idea that you would repeal the affordable care act today is absolutely the worst legislative strategy you can possibly imply to do the very things to say you want to do. you do not give away your leverage. right now, with the affordable care act, we have the greatest patient benefits we have seen in 75 years. they are law. we do not have to agree about them. we do not have to give anyone leverage to do that. we do not have to deal with insurance lobbyists. we are ready won. you give away closing the prescription donut hole. you'll give away pre-existing conditions. you give away, and children under age 26. you give away the fact that they cannot deny coverage simply because we get sick. you give away the right of women not to be treated as second-class citizens, as if they have a pre-existing condition. you would give away their right
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to contraceptives. you'll get all these benefits away so that you can make a political point against the president. that is not good for texas and is not good for the united states. it shows a real fundamental lack of understanding. obamacare -- your complaints about obamacare, you have this conspiracy theory about the president, and you did not like the process. the end result is good things for people, living, breathing people and children. do not give away our benefits so you can make a political point. >> there were a host of accusations and mr. sadler said. most of them were not true. let me make a simple point. a few minutes ago, mr. sadler talked about his passionate on reducing spending and reducing the debt. apparently that does not come to the over $1 trillion of
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expenditures obamacare represents. mr. sadler talks about giving things away -- one of the simplest things -- principles of economics is that there is no such thing as a free lunch. everything mr. sadler said he wants to give you, everything the government is giving us, it must first take from us. that is part of why the burdens on small businesses are so great. there are so many small businesses, even now, beginning to eliminate health care coverage because of these costs. >> let me ask you one question. if obama is reelected, president obama, and democrats hold on to the senate, there is no way you can repeal every syllable obamacare. what then? >> it will be very difficult if that happens. that is why it is important that we defeat barack obama in november and that we retire harry reid in november. one of the biggest differences between my opponent and me would be the very first vote mr. sadler would cast if he were elected, which would be to vote for harry reid to be majority leader.
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harry reid has been the most irresponsible majority leader we have ever seen. the last three years, under his leadership, the senate has not passed a budget. >> i have to respond to this. i do not know who i would vote for majority leader, but we know who you not vote for, john cornyn. if the republicans gain control of the senate -- you have said twice, on two occasions, you would not guarantee you would support john cornyn. that is because your money comes from jim demint. if you are interested texas, how could do not support our
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senior senator majority leader in the abandoned the majority party if the republican party? you will not commit to him. >> mr. cruz? >> if mr. sadler suggests that as a criterion voters should use, who will stand more closely with john cornyn, that is not a complicated question. john is enthusiastically supporting me with in this campaign. he is campaigning on the road with me. >> the question is whether you would support him. >> we will try one more time. >> would you vote for john cornyn as majority leader of the senate? >> he is not running for majority leader. >> would you vote for him? >> i know you are believing you are cross-examining a witness >> just answer my question. yes or no. >> i know you are leaving -- yes or no. yes or no.

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Capitol Hill Hearings
CSPAN October 2, 2012 8:00pm-1:00am EDT

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TOPIC FREQUENCY Mr. Sadler 45, Obama 44, Us 42, Romney 23, United States 14, Mitt Romney 12, America 12, Mccain 11, Washington 11, John Cornyn 11, Alan Schroeder 10, Sadler 10, U.s. 10, Harry Reid 9, Howard Kurtz 9, China 9, Egypt 9, George W. Bush 8, Massachusetts 8, Paul Ryan 8
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